By Olivia Pulsinelli
Gov. Greg Abbott, Texas U.S. Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, and most U.S. Representatives from the Lone Star State sent a letter to Congress last week requesting $18.7 billion for Hurricane Harvey relief.
The letter, sent Oct. 5, urged leaders of the Senate and House Appropriations Committees to include $18.7 billion in Harvey-relief funding in the next Supplemental Appropriations bill. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers would get $10 billion of that, which would be used “to rehabilitate and repair damages to completed USACE projects and those under construction, to implement authorized projects ready for construction, to dredge Federal navigation channels, and for emergency response and recovery operations, repairs, and other activities,” per the letter.
Another $7 billion would be used for Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery funds, and the rest would be split among
• State educational agencies: $800 million
• SBA Disaster Loans Program: $450 million
• Economic Development Administration: $300 million
• Transportation Infrastructure: $150 million
The latest request is in addition to the $15.25 billion in hurricane aid Congress approved last month, per the letter, but it’s just a small portion of the overall economic impact Harvey had on Texas.
“Texas greatly appreciates the appropriations committees’ efforts to swiftly provide funds,” per the letter. “However, in light of the unprecedented damage from Hurricane Harvey and the historically epochal flooding of Houston, Beaumont and surrounding regions, we all recognize that the funding already appropriated is a small fraction of the federal resources needed to help rebuild Texas and reinvigorate the American economy.”