Press Releases

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators John Boozman (R-AR) and Alex Padilla (D-CA) introduced legislation to formalize the Economic Development Administration’s (EDA) role in economic recovery efforts within communities impacted by natural disasters. 

The Office of Disaster Recovery and Resilience Act would create an entity to expedite deployment of resources and improve service delivery to affected communities.

“Arkansans are unfortunately very familiar with the devastation caused by natural disasters. The EDA’s leadership is crucial to the recovery and resilience of communities during these challenging circumstances. Clearly defining the EDA’s role will help improve the federal response and long-term economic outcome,” Boozman said. 

“Economic recovery and revitalization are crucial elements of post-disaster assistance,” said Padilla. “Even with federal assistance to rebuild damaged roads, bridges, and homes, communities can remain impacted for decades after a natural disaster. As extreme weather events become more frequent across the country, disaster recovery activities are increasingly critical to EDA’s mission of promoting more resilient economies. We must formalize EDA’s role in post-disaster assistance to better help communities prepare for, mitigate, and recover from the negative economic impacts of natural disasters.”

The legislation is endorsed by the National Association of Development Organizations, the National Association of Counties, and the International Economic Development Council.

“The creation of an Office of Disaster Recovery and Resilience within the U.S. Economic Development Administration would not only help strengthen communities’ disaster readiness planning efforts, but would also help enhance the impacts of EDA’s disaster mitigation investments. This exciting legislation will help bolster the important role that EDA plays in supporting long-term community economic recovery,” said Joe McKinney, Executive Director, National Association of Development Organizations. 

As a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, Boozman participated in a June hearing to discuss reauthorizing the EDA. Little Rock Port Authority Executive Director Bryan Day testified before the committee to share about the EDA’s impact on growth in Central Arkansas.