WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), member of the Senate Commerce Committee, participated in a Senate Commerce Committee hearing today entitled: “Are We Ready for the Next Hurricane Season? Status of Preparation and Response Capabilities for 2018,” where representatives from the U.S. Coast Guard, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) provided updates on their agencies’ response to Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, and their priorities for the upcoming hurricane season.
At the hearing, Sen. Cruz introduced Mayor Allen Owen of Missouri City, Texas as his invited guest to provide a testimony on Missouri City’s Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts.
Watch Sen. Cruz’s introductory remarks here. The full transcript is below.
“Mr. Chairman, it is a privilege to have the opportunity today to introduce Mayor Allen Owen of Missouri City, Texas. Mayor Owen has led a life dedicated to public service. He has served as the mayor of Missouri City for the past 24 years, and he was a member of the Planning and Zoning Commission and the City Council.
“In addition to holding public office, Mayor Owen has worked tirelessly in the community by serving on countless boards and associations such as the Fort Bend Literary Council, the FBI Citizens Academy Alumni Association, and the Fort Bend Women’s Center and he’s a lifetime vice president and director of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.
“Mayor Owen has been so active in the community, if I were to read his entire record of community involvement we would run out of time for the rest of the hearing.
“However, what brings Mayor Owen to this Committee today is August 25, 2017- the day Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas.
“Hurricane Harvey was unlike any storm we’ve ever seen before. It devastated our Gulf Coast and is considered one of the costliest disasters in United States history.
“As Harvey made landfall, roads became rivers, winds obliterated entire communities and too many precious lives were lost.
“Like many Texans, Mayor Owen didn’t sit back and wait for help. Mayor Owen helped coordinate 1,300 high water rescues and housed and fed 60 state troopers and 17 National Guardsmen for over a week.
“He spent an entire week in the city’s operations center, with no way to get home.
“And even though the water has since receded, the work hasn’t stopped. Eight months since Hurricane Harvey made landfall, Mayor Owen continues to be an integral part of the rebuilding process in Missouri City.
“From cleaning out waterlogged houses, to consoling those who were most affected by the devastation, Mayor Owen is a wonderful example of what it means to be a Texan and I am proud that he is here today to help represent the great state of Texas before this Committee. Welcome Mayor.”