Kinder asks Pres. Bush to expedite flood help

Monday, June 16, 2008 | 9:50 a.m. CDT; updated 3:42 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, July 22, 2008

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo.—Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder is asking President Bush to expedite a disaster declaration to help Missouri deal with record flooding along the Mississippi River.

With Gov. Matt Blunt out of the state, Kinder has deployed 15 more National Guard members to help manage relief efforts in West Quincy, Mo. In a statement, Kinder asks Bush for "swift action as we move more National Guard members into areas where flooding looks inevitable."

In tiny Alexandria in far northeast Missouri, all residents have been told to get out by Monday. Officials say the predicted crest of just under 29 feet there will be a foot higher than 1993 levels and probably too much for the levee to withstand.

Sandbaggers, including Attorney General Jay Nixon, are fortifying levees in Hannibal, Canton and other riverside communities where cresting is expected Thursday.

Nixon and local elected officials are filling sandbags and thanking volunteers in Clarksville, Hannibal and West Quincy.

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