State Rep. Mike McCready, R-Bloomfield Hills, was among the state legislators and local first responders honored by Michigan Task Force 1 and the Michigan Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS) this week.
The organizations — an urban rescue task force and its oversight arm — specifically singled out McCready and fellow legislators John Walsh and Joe Haveman for helping resolve the issue of long-standing funding for the multi-jurisdictional force during a formal ceremony Monday at the Southfield Public Library. The former Bloomfield Hills commissioner and Birmingham businessman, elected to his first term in 2012, is chairman of the appropriations subcommittee on Michigan State Police.
"This effort is an excellent example of regional cooperation and public-private partnerships," MABAS officials said in a news release. "The foresight and leadership of these individuals enhance public safety and emergency preparedness in the State of Michigan."
Prior to MI-TF1's formation in 2010, emergency responders in Michigan lacked the resources and expertise to conduct search and rescue operations in collapsed buildings constructed of heavy concrete and steel. The closest available FEMA team is located in Indianapolis.
Belfor Property Restoration, headquartered in Birmingham, provided critical funding to keep the task force going, but annual funding was an issue before the State Legislature addressed it earlier this year.
MABAS will serve as the oversight board for MI-TF1.