Joplin City Manager Mark Rohr and other city officials who handled last year's Joplin tornado relief were scheduled to speak to a group of emergency management coordinators in the state of New York today. That meeting has been canceled.
But Rohr has contacted Missouri's Emergency Management Agency, offering to send about 30 city employees to the northeast. The Joplin workers are from different departments, such as police and public works.
The state contacted FEMA and that federal agency might ask Joplin for some of its offered resources.
"We didn't think we were the best entity to lead the effort, because there's other established organizations - we want to start that process and partner with others," says Rohr. "I don't know that we're going to do it ourselves. We will, in terms of the personnel, but not necessarily in terms of relief items and goods."
Rohr says one lesson he learned from last year's tornado was the importance of city officials to ask for how their help is best needed.
"We don't want to pretend that we know more than others, or we know more about their particular situation. We want to find out a place where we can help and we'll certainly do everything we can to provide that assistance. But we're waiting to hear what that specific need is."