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BASTROP TX OBAMA DECLARES MAJOR DISASTER, PERRY A NO SHOW

flounder

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http://blog.chron.com/txpotomac/files/2011/09/Texas-fires-9-8-11-color-640x490.jpg




BASTROP - TENSIONS FLARE, OBAMA DECLARES MAJOR DISASTER, PERRY A NO SHOW


yee haw . ...



Gov. Perry is a no-show at wildfire press conference

Posted on September 10, 2011 at 6:09 pm by Peggy Fikac in Campaign 2012, Gov. Rick Perry



Gov. Rick Perry, who was scheduled to be in Bastrop today to see and talk about the latest on the wildfires, didn’t show up.

His office had sent out two advisories about his media availability. The second one gave a new location for the event.

But when the cameras started rolling, Perry wasn’t there.

His staff said he was in Austin, stymied by the logistics of showing up after the location was changed.

Reporter Hollie O’Connor was on the scene and talked to Perry staffer Allison Castle, who said, “Our intention was for him to be here. The location we had was not open yet, so we weren’t able to get all of you into that area, and so we were working with officials to find an alternate location, and I think you all got the change of plans as we were trying to solidify things, so again, due to logistical issues, we weren’t able to get him here. We didn’t want to hold y’all up.”

“We had all the local officials here and were able to provide the afternoon update with chief (Nimm) Kidd giving you up the update from the state.”

Castle didn’t say exactly why he couldn’t make it to the new location.

Perry just got back to Texas after a California campaign swing.



http://blog.chron.com/rickperry/2011/09/gov-perry-is-a-no-show-at-wildfire-press-conference/




Tensions flare in Bastrop

By Hollie O'Connor, STAFF WRITER

Updated 11:48 p.m., Saturday, September 10, 2011



BASTROP - Emotions ran high Saturday as the most destructive wildfire in Texas history ravaged the area for a seventh day.

After spending nearly a week wondering whether his home had been destroyed, George Gaydos got the news Saturday: His house had burned down.

But Gaydos - who has been living at a hotel with his wife, two children and father since fleeing nearly a week ago - still can't return to see what is left.

Fire crews made progress Saturday fighting the Bastrop wildfire, but concerns over still smoldering hot spots have kept thousands from going home.

Tensions flared during a news conference Saturday as some residents shouted questions at county officials, demanding to know when they could return to their homes. But the room erupted in cheers when Bastrop County Judge Ronnie McDonald confirmed that President Barack Obama had issued a major disaster declaration for Texas, allowing FEMA to start releasing funds to victims.

Gov. Rick Perry was expected to appear Saturday afternoon in Bastrop to comment on the disaster declaration but canceled. Spokeswoman Allison Castle cited "logistical reasons," noting that the site of the conference was moved hours before the event.

As of Saturday's briefing, 622 structures were confirmed destroyed. The fire was 40 percent contained.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Tensions-flare-in-Bastrop-2164852.php




In Rick Perry's Texas, Firefighters Forced To Pay For Gear, Engine Fuel

First Posted: 9/9/11 07:56 PM ET Updated: 9/11/11 09:44 AM ET


WASHINGTON -- In Texas, firefighters aren't just battling the wild fires raging around Austin and Houston. The state's first responders have also had to deal with budget cuts affecting everything from fuel purchases to hoses and air tanks.

In some cases, fire officials say, firefighters have had to pay out of pocket for basic necessities like proper protective gear and fuel to get them to the scene. One fire department that battled the blazes in Bastrop County had to pay for a hose, recalled Bastrop City Fire Chief Henry Perry, speaking to The Huffington Post during a break from working the wild fires.

"That fire department has been on this fire every day," he said. "Before this fire, they were having to buy stuff out of their own pocket." Perry said he knows of at least one other department whose firemen had to pay for equipment maintenance and engine fuel.

Earlier this week, HuffPost reported that Gov. Rick Perry, the GOP front-runner for president, had signed off on millions in firefighting cuts as part of the state's most recent budget legislation. The Texas Forest Service's funding has gone from $117.7 million in the 2010-2011 budget years to $83 million in the 2012-2013 budget years.

Severe cuts have also hit assistance grants to volunteer fire departments throughout Texas. The grants decreased from $30 million per year in 2010 and 2011 to $13.5 million per year in 2012 and 2013. These are cuts that firemen are now dealing with.


snip...see full article here ;


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/09/rick-perry-fire-department-cuts-texas-wild-fires_n_956307.html
 

hopalong

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YAWN more drivel from the fish guy!!! that is a self proclaimed expert at crying WOLF

EH dr lol lol lol lol
 

Trinity man

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. The state's first responders have also had to deal with budget cuts affecting everything from fuel purchases to hoses and air tanks.

This is one thing Perry shouldn't have never touched when cutting budgets. The bad thing is the drought was going on when they did it to. From the other things I have been hearding I hope we get another guy in the race for president.
 

Mike

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Trinity man said:
. The state's first responders have also had to deal with budget cuts affecting everything from fuel purchases to hoses and air tanks.

This is one thing Perry shouldn't have never touched when cutting budgets. The bad thing is the drought was going on when they did it to. From the other things I have been hearding I hope we get another guy in the race for president.


The budget wasn't actually cut:

Texas Forest Service appropriations

Biennium Total (in millions)

2002 – 2003 $43.5

2004 – 2005 $70.6

2006 – 2007 $72.4

2008 – 2009 $75.2

2010 – 2011 $109.2 (Increase due to special equipment purchases from Federal Stimulus proceeds. One time deal.)

2012 – 2013 $75.4

The amounts of "State" money have stayed the same or increased.
 

Trinity man

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Mike said:
Trinity man said:
. The state's first responders have also had to deal with budget cuts affecting everything from fuel purchases to hoses and air tanks.

This is one thing Perry shouldn't have never touched when cutting budgets. The bad thing is the drought was going on when they did it to. From the other things I have been hearding I hope we get another guy in the race for president.


The budget wasn't actually cut:

Texas Forest Service appropriations

Biennium Total (in millions)

2002 – 2003 $43.5

2004 – 2005 $70.6

2006 – 2007 $72.4

2008 – 2009 $75.2

2010 – 2011 $109.2 (Increase due to special equipment purchases from Federal Stimulus proceeds. One time deal.)

2012 – 2013 $75.4

The amounts of "State" money have stayed the same or increased.




Thats not what the Fort Worth Star Telegram is reporting.


[/quote]As the Texas Forest Service battles what may be the state's most destructive wildfire outbreak ever, state lawmakers are facing criticism that they have taken a penny-wise-pound-foolish approach to funding the agency.

Texas is one of the few states that rely primarily on volunteer fire departments to protect rural areas from wildfires. About 330 firefighters with the forest service traditionally serve as a second tier of defense when such fires get larger than the local department can handle.

The Legislature cut the agency's funding this year to $83 million from $117 million, according to Robby DeWitt, the forest service's associate finance director.

Chris Barron, executive director of the State Firemen's and Fire Marshals' Association of Texas, said: "It's very frustrating that they don't have the proper tools and resources to fight these fires. If fire departments had enough funding, if the forest service had enough funding, we wouldn't be in this predicament over each and every year."

The issue is drawing more attention in part because of the sheer scope of the Central Texas wildfire, which has destroyed more than 1,500 homes and killed at least two people. There's also a new political component as critics charge that the budget cuts are proof that the fiscal restraint Gov. Rick Perry is touting on the presidential campaign trail comes at a price.

Perry's office did not respond to a request for comment Thursday. Perry has previously said that his push this year to preserve billions in the rainy day fund was partly in case of a natural disaster. FEMA has begun approving requests for aid.

"Because so many fires are burning across the state, our resources are spread pretty thin," Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst said Wednesday. "That's why we need the federal government to step up to the plate immediately. We need to cut through the red tape and get Texas the help we need today."

In recent years, as the costs of fighting bigger and more frequent wildfires have grown, the forest service has regularly outspent its budget, state records show. Most of the extra money has paid for out-of-state help that can cost up to four times more than comparable in-state resources. The forest service has previously warned lawmakers that underfunding has led to more destructive fires that ultimately cost the state more money.

This year, the back-door funding need has exceeded the forest service's entire budget. As of Aug. 31, the end of the state's fiscal year, the agency spent $182.5 million beyond what the Legislature had originally budgeted, DeWitt said. "That is the problem with the slash and burn approach," said state Rep. Lon Burnam, D-Fort Worth. "It's just one example of many in how services have been cut not to the flesh but to the bone."

DeWitt said the latest funding cuts translate mostly into the agency approving fewer grants for new equipment for volunteer fire departments. That fund had to be cut from $23 million to $7 million, he said. Since 2003, the fund has been used largely to defray costs for new trucks for volunteer departments, with lesser amounts spent on safety gear and training.

"What we're planning is to not award grants for trucks," DeWitt said. "That's the biggest expenditure."

He said the cuts do not directly affect operational costs for volunteer fire departments, most of which are financed at the local level.

The firemen's association is drawing attention to the state's funding woes as it solicit donations to buy wildfire-fighting gear for the state's volunteer firefighters. Many firefighters have gear for fighting only structural fires, which isn't practical for use in wildfires, Barron said. As a result, some firefighters are battling blazes in their "street clothes," he said

The fund has drawn about $200,000 in donations since May, but the Association has $500,000 in requests for gear, said Kelsey Coleman, a spokeswoman for the Texas Wildfire Relief Fund.
More.

http://www.star-telegram.com/2011/09/08/3349133/texas-forest-service-grappling.html
 

Mike

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Trinity wrote:
He said the cuts do not directly affect operational costs for volunteer fire departments, most of which are financed at the local level.
It's customary for the volunteer fire depts to be funded from property taxes.
 

Trinity man

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Mike said:
Trinity wrote:
He said the cuts do not directly affect operational costs for volunteer fire departments, most of which are financed at the local level.
It's customary for the volunteer fire depts to be funded from property taxes.

If you read it its from the Texas Forest Service not Volunteer fire departments.
 

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something is not adding up with this article.....



At the time, agency officials said a 25- to 30-year dry period was likely to mean a rise in the number and severity of wildfires in Texas. The forest service argued that funding wildfire protection properly required an extra $20.4 million in annual funding, an investment that would pay for itself in the long run as it would mean fewer requests for more expensive out-of-state resources.

DeWitt said Forest Service officials knew back in 2008 that they wouldn't get the full funding increase in one shot.

"We requested $7 million to take the next step," DeWitt said. "They approved $8.5 million per year."

That led to the creation of 60 positions in the forest service, though only some were filled, state records show. Because of the recent budget cuts, the forest service has cut 10 full-time positions that were vacant, DeWitt said. None of the positions were firefighters.

Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/2011/09/08/3349133/texas-forest-service-grappling.html#ixzz1XhtmvNt6
 

hypocritexposer

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something is not adding up with this article.....

They requested $7 Million, got $8.5, but that wasn't enough, so they cancelled vacant non-firefighter positions

Seems to me, this article was written in an attempt to attack Perry



"Unfortunately, we have examples of communities being burned over because the state did not have enough resources," the agency told the Legislature in a routine appropriations request in 2008.

Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/2011/09/08/3349133/texas-forest-service-grappling.html#ixzz1XhtyXkHY


At the time, agency officials said a 25- to 30-year dry period was likely to mean a rise in the number and severity of wildfires in Texas. The forest service argued that funding wildfire protection properly required an extra $20.4 million in annual funding, an investment that would pay for itself in the long run as it would mean fewer requests for more expensive out-of-state resources.

DeWitt said Forest Service officials knew back in 2008 that they wouldn't get the full funding increase in one shot.

"We requested $7 million to take the next step," DeWitt said. "They approved $8.5 million per year."

That led to the creation of 60 positions in the forest service, though only some were filled, state records show. Because of the recent budget cuts, the forest service has cut 10 full-time positions that were vacant, DeWitt said. None of the positions were firefighters.

Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/2011/09/08/3349133/texas-forest-service-grappling.html#ixzz1XhtmvNt6
 

hypocritexposer

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from the Texas Forest Service website

State lawmakers have allocated about $20 million in annual, additional funding for Texas Forest Service, allowing the agency to beef up volunteer fire departments’ capacity, as well as its own.

That includes $9 million per year for Texas Wildfire Protection Plan, a five-part approach to disaster response that focuses on predictive services, prevention and mitigation, planning and preparedness, local capacity building and rapid response.

Legislators also boosted the budget by another $10 million per year for the rural volunteer fire department assistance grant program. The new money combined with existing funds will allow the agency to devote about $25 million annually to the program.

TFS interim Director Tom Boggus praised the Rural Fire Advisory Council, the State Firemen’s & Fire Marshal’s Association of Texas and the Texas Forestry Association for their support during the session. He also applauded the efforts of HB 4002 author State Rep. David Swinford, R-Dumas and Senate sponsor Sen. Robert Duncan, R-Lubbock.

During the 81st legislative session, lawmakers also:

Transferred a $1 million per year grant program to Texas Forest Service from the Texas Commission on Fire Protection.
Increased the Volunteer Fire Department Insurance Program by $250,000 per year.
Approved a land swap between Fairchild State Forest and a neighboring property owner. The state forest swapped disconnected forestland for a parcel that was the same-size and contiguous to the main forest.

http://txforestservice.tamu.edu/main/article.aspx?id=10730
 
A

Anonymous

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Trinity man said:
Mike said:
Trinity wrote:
He said the cuts do not directly affect operational costs for volunteer fire departments, most of which are financed at the local level.
It's customary for the volunteer fire depts to be funded from property taxes.

If you read it its from the Texas Forest Service not Volunteer fire departments.

Chris Barron, executive director of the State Firemen's and Fire Marshals' Association of Texas, said: "It's very frustrating that they don't have the proper tools and resources to fight these fires. If fire departments had enough funding, if the forest service had enough funding, we wouldn't be in this predicament over each and every year."
---


In recent years, as the costs of fighting bigger and more frequent wildfires have grown, the forest service has regularly outspent its budget, state records show. Most of the extra money has paid for out-of-state help that can cost up to four times more than comparable in-state resources. The forest service has previously warned lawmakers that underfunding has led to more destructive fires that ultimately cost the state more money.

This year, the back-door funding need has exceeded the forest service's entire budget. As of Aug. 31, the end of the state's fiscal year, the agency spent $182.5 million beyond what the Legislature had originally budgeted, DeWitt said. "That is the problem with the slash and burn approach," said state Rep. Lon Burnam, D-Fort Worth. "It's just one example of many in how services have been cut not to the flesh but to the bone."

DeWitt said the latest funding cuts translate mostly into the agency approving fewer grants for new equipment for volunteer fire departments. That fund had to be cut from $23 million to $7 million, he said. Since 2003, the fund has been used largely to defray costs for new trucks for volunteer departments, with lesser amounts spent on safety gear and training.

"What we're planning is to not award grants for trucks," DeWitt said. "That's the biggest expenditure."

Yep Trinity- it sure looks to me like spending cuts... and since the danger has increased and the funding decreased it appears the Governor and legislature did not follow the 6P's of emergency service providing:
Prior
Planning
Prevents
Piss
Poor
Performance

Thats the problem with unthought out budget/program slashing- Saving a few pennies now- can end up costing you Millions later - like it is now...Beside the devestation it reeks onto people and families...

I understand many of the meteorologists and forestry/land experts had forewarned on what was coming - but apparently from his book and speech's the Governor doesn't believe in much of science...

And I'd sure believe those out there putting there lives on the line for the state- then some state politician wanting to make a name hoping to take them to higher office......
 

hypocritexposer

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If Texas cut the spending in May, would that not be for next year? Funding had already been allocated for this year.
 
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hypocritexposer said:
If Texas cut the spending in May, would that not be for next year? Funding had already been allocated for this year.

Perry has been there 11 years- and from the article this sounds like a long time growing problem that just came to a head.....
 

Trinity man

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Perry has seem to put himself before the people now. The one thing I would like to know we were in great shape before he got elected govern last year and now we are in bad shape, what happen? Perry was a dem. when he first ran for a representive position years ago and now a Rep. What happen there to? I just don't care for him to much with all the history I had heard from some of this family. His own sister lead the protest against his super hiway system and she feel me in on all the other things he has tried. I can't wait until some of this hit the news. His hot spot will be in his own but and no fire fighter will be there to put it out. :lol:
 

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Oldtimer said:
hypocritexposer said:
If Texas cut the spending in May, would that not be for next year? Funding had already been allocated for this year.

Perry has been there 11 years- and from the article this sounds like a long time growing problem that just came to a head.....

you didn't answer the question. If the cuts that you keep going on about were just done in May, how does that affect the spending that has already been allocated for this year?
 

Trinity man

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hypocritexposer said:
If Texas cut the spending in May, would that not be for next year? Funding had already been allocated for this year.

No our year starts Sept 1. The state meets every 2 years to set the budget for the next two years. So this problem is just starting and the state has already burn over 3 million ac. so far this year. La Nina is coming back again now so it not going to get any better for us this winter either,
 
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Trinity man said:
Perry has seem to put himself before the people now. The one thing I would like to know we were in great shape before he got elected govern last year and now we are in bad shape, what happen? Perry was a dem. when he first ran for a representive position years ago and now a Rep. What happen there to? I just don't care for him to much with all the history I had heard from some of this family. His own sister lead the protest against his super hiway system and she feel me in on all the other things he has tried. I can't wait until some of this hit the news. His hot spot will be in his own but and no fire fighter will be there to put it out. :lol:

Yep- my sister lives in the Austin area- and is the conservative of conservatives-- and she doesn't trust him... Said he has spent too much time/tax money trying to build his own little Kingdom and get all his cronies (yes men) into office so he can get things like his super hiway thru without anyone being able to oppose him...
Usually me and her don't agree on everything- but on Perry we do...He's not what this country needs....
 

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Trinity man said:
hypocritexposer said:
If Texas cut the spending in May, would that not be for next year? Funding had already been allocated for this year.

No our year starts Sept 1. The state meets every 2 years to set the budget for the next two years. So this problem is just starting and the state has already burn over 3 million ac. so far this year. La Nina is coming back again now so it not going to get any better for us this winter either,


so the cuts only took effect at the beginning of Sept? Have they already used up what they were allocated since then?

I'm sorry, but the budget cuts are not affecting how this fire is being fought. they may affect future emergencies, but no this one.
 

Trinity man

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Oldtimer said:
Trinity man said:
Perry has seem to put himself before the people now. The one thing I would like to know we were in great shape before he got elected govern last year and now we are in bad shape, what happen? Perry was a dem. when he first ran for a representive position years ago and now a Rep. What happen there to? I just don't care for him to much with all the history I had heard from some of this family. His own sister lead the protest against his super hiway system and she feel me in on all the other things he has tried. I can't wait until some of this hit the news. His hot spot will be in his own but and no fire fighter will be there to put it out. :lol:

Yep- my sister lives in the Austin area- and is the conservative of conservatives-- and she doesn't trust him... Said he has spent too much time/tax money trying to build his own little Kingdom and get all his cronies (yes men) into office so he can get things like his super hiway thru without anyone being able to oppose him...
Usually me and her don't agree on everything- but on Perry we do...He's not what this country needs....


If it was him or Obama I would vote for him just to get him out of Texas. When I would just pray Washington could keep him under control.
 

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Trinity man said:
Oldtimer said:
Trinity man said:
Perry has seem to put himself before the people now. The one thing I would like to know we were in great shape before he got elected govern last year and now we are in bad shape, what happen? Perry was a dem. when he first ran for a representive position years ago and now a Rep. What happen there to? I just don't care for him to much with all the history I had heard from some of this family. His own sister lead the protest against his super hiway system and she feel me in on all the other things he has tried. I can't wait until some of this hit the news. His hot spot will be in his own but and no fire fighter will be there to put it out. :lol:

Yep- my sister lives in the Austin area- and is the conservative of conservatives-- and she doesn't trust him... Said he has spent too much time/tax money trying to build his own little Kingdom and get all his cronies (yes men) into office so he can get things like his super hiway thru without anyone being able to oppose him...
Usually me and her don't agree on everything- but on Perry we do...He's not what this country needs....


If it was him or Obama I would vote for him just to get him out of Texas. When I would just pray Washington could keep him under control.


He does seem to be an opportunist, as I mentioned previously, but it appears that some on here are also opportunists.

Using the wildfires to take shots at the Tea Party or Perry is just partisan politics.

This situation could have happened in any state and the circumstances are very similiar in many.

I thought that was the point of the discussion.
 

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