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URGENT: Strong Motion and Seismic Hazards Mapping programs

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Fellow Engineers:
 
I just received this letter...  I spite of some partisan rhetoric, the linked LA Times article raises some apparently serious questions.     
 
Professionally, I regularly use the information from the Strong Motion Instrumentation and the California Seismic Hazards Mapping Programs.  The cancellation of the programs may indeed push us back considerably.  At the same time, there may be other - I mean, other than political - considerations I am not aware of... 
 
So, what would be the opinion on the issue of the structural engineering community in general and of the California engineers in particular?  Please note the sample letters...
 
Thanks
 
Steve Gordin
Registered Structural Engineer
Irvine CA
          
 
 

Dear California Colleagues:

We have just been informed that the Strong Motion Instrumentation and the California Seismic Hazards Mapping Programs are in serious jeopardy. Inspite of the fact that both programs have been recommended for funding in the Governor's budget proposal, Assembly staff members are recommending that both programs be eliminated. For more information about the potential loss of funding for the Strong Motion and Seismic Hazards Mapping programs, see: www.seismicactivist.homestead.com. This site contains a description of the problem, sample letters of concern, and the names and addresses of the people to whom letters should be sent in the Assembly and Senate. We urge you to act today and send letters in support of continued funding for these critical programs.

<> EERI