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Kind of lost in the shuffle regarding the repubs slashing of numerous programs is the little item of cutting 30% of the budget of the National Weather Service. This includes the Hurricane Center in Florida, who do all the forecasting for tropical systems in the Atlantic basin and the Storm Prediction Center on Oklahoma, where the national forecasting and research into severe weather such as tornadoes is done.

This will result in, according to those in the know:

Joseph Calderone has been a forecaster for the National Weather Service in Charleston, South Carolina since 2002. He's a member of the National Weather Services Employees Organization. Calderone says the House needs to put the deep freeze on the plan.

"There is a very heightened risk for loss of life if these cuts go through. The inability for warnings to be disseminated to the public, whether due to staffing inadequacies, radar maintenance problems or weather radio transmitter difficulties, would be disastrous," said Calderone.

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Not only would the ability for the NWS to do timely warnings be affected, there is a chance that the weather balloons and satellite data that are input into weather models will be severely curtailed, which would mean weather forecasts for severe weather, flooding and tornadoes would decrease in accuracy, as well as just your garden variety "what should I wear forecasts".

Twenty-two NWS offices would close for 27 days in a rolling blackout and employees would not get paid. If the Louisville office is shut down during severe weather, Louisville meteorologists would have to rely on offices in the region like Paducah, Nashville, or Indianapolis for information to base their forecasts on.

Typical "throw the baby out with the bath" short sighted thinking from the R's. The NWS is one agency you would think that everyone would agree is worth the relatively small budget in comparison to other programs- after all everyone is affected by the weather. But I guess that this is some of that high falutin' "science" that the Republicans do not believe in.

When there is a devastating tornado that goes unwarned in some red district I bet there will be howls of "what happened" from the same idiots that are going along with this folly.

I hope that if the Dems "compromise" and do go along with some spending cuts, this one is not included.

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