NewsRegion South Pinellas


Cuts to National Weather Service could impact weather warning system in Tampa Bay area

Posted at 7:04 PM, Feb 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-14 19:06:31-05

Meteorologists with the National Weather Service are worried about a proposed $15-million cut to the agency from President Trump.  The plan would eliminate about 350 jobs. 

"Our mission is to save lives, it’s not like other agencies, why would they want to mess around with that trust,” said NWS union President Dan Sobien.

The agency works directly with television stations and county governments to provide warnings and watches to residents.

“We work with the Ruskin office weekly,” said Manatee County Emergency Manager Sherilyn Burris.

But Sobien said the Ruskin office would go from a full-time to part-time office if the cuts go through. He said county leaders would often be speaking to a forecaster in Tallahassee during an emergency.  

"They’ll be talking to someone in Tallahassee who will have to go to Google maps and find out where Adamo drive is," said Sobien.

Sobien said he plans to work with lawmakers to keep the cuts from happening.