WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Clay Higgins took to the House floor last night to offer his support for H.R. 353, the Weather Research & Forecasting Innovation Act of 2017, before it passed unanimously.
The bill enhances weather forecasting and alerts at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), placing new and cutting-edge technologies into operation. The legislation also creates a tornado forecasting improvement program to develop more accurate, effective, and timely tornado forecasts that will allow for increased lead times.
“This weekend, deadly storms ravaged Louisiana’s third district, tragically taking the lives of Francine Gotch and her three-year-old daughter Nevaeh Alexander. My heart and soul ache for Francine and little Nevaeh,” said Rep. Higgins. “I do not know if a better weather forecasting service would have made a difference on the outcome of this past weekend, however as elected officials we must make it a priority to do better to protect American lives and property.”
The bill also provides for technology transfers between the National Weather Service and private sector weather companies and universities to improve forecasting.
“Louisianians know all too well the danger that mother nature can pose as well as the need for reliable information to adequately prepare for such occurrences. We need good, common-sense legislation like this to protect our families and property.”