Leaders from Duluth and northeastern Minnesota thanked state legislators Friday as committees reviewed a $167.5 million flood-relief package.
The package is to be voted on in a legislative special session later Friday.
"We're just very grateful," Duluth Mayor Don Ness told the Senate Finance Committee, whose members reviewed the package Friday morning.
The region was hit hard by flash-flooding during an overnight deluge in June. Ness described a Duluth homeowner who had been struggling economically since the recession of 2007-08, and who was getting on her feet when the flood wrecked her basement and utilities.
"She called my office in tears," Ness said, worried that she couldn't afford a new furnace before winter.
"The bill before you gives her hope," he told the committee.
Similar expressions of gratitude were heard from St. Louis County Commissioner Chris Dahlberg and Carlton County Coordinator Dennis Genereau.
"We have prepared for a rainy day," Dahlberg said."We never expected this type of rainy day."
"It will nurture the hope that we all have that full recovery can be made," Genereau said.