Senate approves Sandy relief package

Posted on

The U.S. Senate Monday approved a delayed $50.5 billion relief bill for victims of Hurricane Sandy, three months after the storm hammered New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, damaging or destroying hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses.

The measure now goes to President Obama, who has promised to sign it.

The money includes grant funding for owners of homes and businesses, as well as funding for public improvement projects on the electrical grid, hospitals and transit systems to prevent damage from future storms, CNN reported.

The 62-36 vote came after senators turned back an attempt to require budget cuts elsewhere to offset the cost of storm relief, a proposal that further irked several members.

“For decades, taxpayers from New York have sent their money when disasters occurred, with fires on the West Coast or floods in the Missouri and Mississippi valleys or hurricanes in Louisiana and Florida,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. “We’ve sent our tax dollars, billions of them — and now, all of a sudden, some are suggesting we should change the rules when we are hit by the first major disaster to hit the New York City region in a very long time. That’s not fair. That’s not right.”

New York has estimated its storm-related costs at nearly $42 billion. New Jersey’s estimated losses totaled about $37 billion. In a joint statement, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy praised the Senate for approving the funds “despite the difficult path in getting to this moment.”

“To all Americans, we are grateful for their willingness to come to our aid as we take on the monumental task of rebuilding, and we pledge to do the same should our fellow citizens find themselves facing unexpected and harsh devastation,” they said.

The Senate approved a $60 billion aid package for the hard-hit region in late December. But House Speaker John Boehner scrapped a vote on the bill before the clock ran out on the last Congress on Jan. 1, leading to howls of outrage from New York and New Jersey officials. Christie, the keynote speaker at last year’s GOP convention, said the move explained “why the American people hate Congress.”

Chastened House leaders quickly scheduled new votes, passing $9 billion to bolster the federal flood insurance program in the first week of January and voting 241-180 to approve another $50 billion on Jan. 15.

The Senate also passed the flood insurance bill, which Obama signed in early January. After Monday’s vote, Obama said that for people struggling to rebuild, “every day without relief is one day too many.”

“So while I had hoped Congress would provide this aid sooner, I applaud the lawmakers from both parties who helped shepherd this important package though,” he said.

Click here for the full report.

Welcome to TradeOnlyToday’s premium content! To continue reading, please register now, for access to 10 free stories per month. Or subscribe, for unlimited access to all TradeOnlyToday content!

Click here to Register ... it's free!

Basic subscription: Registered members get free access to 10 premium content stories each month!

Not a member yet? Click here to Register!

Already a member? Click here to Login!

Subscribe ... for unlimited access!

Individual subscription: $29 for unlimited site access for one year.

Small Business subscription: $140 for unlimited site access for up to 10 members of a company for one year.

Corporate subscription: $300 for unlimited site access for all members of a company for one year.

You may close this dialog after seconds.

Comments

3 comments on “Senate approves Sandy relief package

  1. Ole Boat Builder

    Why do we continue to refer to this bill as 50.5 billion in aid relief to the victims of Hurricane Sandy? The bill is loaded with over 5 billion in pork for areas throughout the country which had nothing to do with the hurricane, including millions for new cars for the CIA and Treasury Department. Just another example of how our esteemed congress can’t get anything right.

  2. Breezeswept

    How many “add-on” projects outside the hurricane zone got funded, who were these pork recipient projects?? We’re there any projects included in inland states, far away from the waters edge????

  3. Bruce Duncan

    Why is congress so eager to assist other countries in their disasters and foreign aid borrowing the money when the tax payers are struggling to rebuild in the USA,someone needs to man up and make us healthy at home.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive. For more information, please see our Comments Policy.

Vote Today

What is the best outcome for the marine industry in the November mid-term elections?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Search Boats for Sale

Length
Year
Price

Login to Trade Only Today

Lost Password