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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Oregon Legislature. This is a venue for political and policy coverage of the state government in Salem and its impact on the people of Oregon.

Audit Finds Problems With Oregon's Disaster Planning

A new audit released Monday by the Oregon Secretary of State's office says the state is ill-prepared for a major disaster.

The report cites insufficient planning and organizational problems in its Office of Emergency Management.

Auditors said high-level staff turnover and low morale at the Office of Emergency Management means Oregon isn't fully prepared to handle the aftermath of a big quake or other catastrophe. The report says the agency has failed to complete plans for handling certain types of disasters.

The auditors found this lack of preparedness has put the state in jeopardy of losing out on federal funding for hazard mitigation.

The head of the Office of Emergency Management acknowledged that audit took place during a time of what he calls "substantial transition."

Daniel Hokanson says the agency is working to address many of the concerns raised by the audit.