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Luetkemeyer says citizens must come first in face of Missouri flooding


Missouri has been hit by extreme flooding this year, causing near-historic levels of water damage. While these may be viewed as natural disasters, Sen. Tony Luetkemeyer recently said the devastation is partially a product of human error.

“I think there’s no doubt that a lot of this is a man-made problem,” Luetkemeyer, a Republican, said during a Sunday appearance on This Week in Missouri Politics. “There are things that we can do at the federal and state level to reduce some of these burdens on people and make sure we don’t have this kind of devastating flooding in the future.”

Luetkemeyer, along with Sen. Dan Hegeman, introduced a resolution last month targeting the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The resolution urged the Corps to shift its priorities when it came to flood control.

“[Hegeman and I] asked the Army Corps of Engineers to reprioritize its flood plan for the river,” Luetkemeyer said. “We need to be protecting farms, we need to be protecting businesses, and we need to be protecting homes before we worry about fish and wildlife.”

In addition to the resolution, $8 million was allocated in Missouri’s budget for additional flood relief during this past session. President Donald Trump also signed a federal disaster declaration, which will allocate for FEMA funds for relief efforts.

The show’s bipartisan panel consisted of Reps. Robert Ross and Robert Sauls, both of who spoke on multiple topics such as the abortion bill, issues revolving around property taxes, and the recent death of fellow Rep. Rebecca Roeber.

Ross, a Republican, also discussed his campaign for state Senate.

“Looking at the way the policy progresses and the work that has to be done to be effective, I see a benefit and opportunity to continue serving the citizens of south-central Missouri,” Ross said.

Watch Sunday’s episode of This Week in Missouri Politics below for more on highway repairs, Medicaid enrollment, and insights on partisan cooperation.