A bipartisan group of Florida Cabinet members and state lawmakers is demanding that U.S. lawmakers pass a disaster-relief package for Hurricane Michael victims.
Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis, Attorney General Ashley Moody, Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried and lawmakers said Thursday they were infuriated that Congress had failed to pass relief legislation.
“It has been over six months since Hurricane Michael made landfall in the Florida Panhandle as a Category 5 hurricane and it’s unacceptable that the devastated areas still don’t have congressional relief dollars. It is obvious that these communities are stuck in the middle of political games. I will not stand down until Congress takes action to pass a relief bill for recovery efforts. Families and businesses need it,” Patronis said in a statement.
Patronis and his fellow Florida Cabinet members say partisan politics shouldn’t play a role in getting the package passed. The legislation would also aid victims of disasters in Georgia, California, Alaska, North Carolina and Puerto Rico.
“It cannot be said more clearly or urgently — the time for further delay on Hurricane Michael relief is over. Floridians and our fellow Americans are struggling. Congress must pass a strong supplemental disaster relief package immediately upon their return to Washington,” Commissioner of Agriculture Nikki Fried said. “Every moment the people of Florida and our lands go without federal assistance, the threat of wildfires, future storms, and economic devastation grows.”
President Trump’s opposition to aid to Puerto Rico sparked a standoff with congressional Democrats demanding more aid for the island.
Separately, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Florida is getting a $5.8 million federal grant to pay Floridians left unemployed by the hurricane to work in cleanup jobs.
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