Okla. Gov. Fallin fears ‘red tape’ will slow tornado recovery

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) on Sunday said she was worried about bureaucratic “red tape” slowing down the recovery from a deadly tornado in her state.

Speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Fallin said she has had a “great response” from the federal government so far, but feared that Oklahoma residents would face delays in receiving critical aid.

"We have, first of all, appreciate the president coming to Oklahoma to see the devastation," Fallin said."It is huge here and a lot of need here. But, basically, what I need is the ability to get through red tape, the ability to get the [Federal Emergency Management Association] funds in here quickly, and to get the services that our citizens need to help them recover through this terrible disaster."

The governor’s comments come ahead of a Sunday visit from President Obama to the devastated suburbs near Oklahoma City.

Fallin praised local officials and residents for their response to the EF-5 tornado that struck Moore, Okla. last week. The storm, which is the highest category for such an event, carried winds of more than 200 miles-per-hour and killed more than 20 people.

The governor said her state was bouncing back.

“The communities did step up,” she said. “The fire departments, the police officers, the emergency personnel, the local mayors, they were on the ground.

“Our people are doing well, we’re resilient,” Fallin continued. “There’s already a big path of debris that’s been moved around. People are gathering their stuff.

“It’s been truly remarkable to see how our people have responded, and how strong they are,” Fallin added.