Rooney to Senate Democrats: Stop Holding Disaster Bill Hostage
WASHINGTON, DC – Today marks exactly five months since Hurricane Irma tore through Florida’s Heartland and decimated Florida’s iconic citrus industry, resulting in the state’s lowest citrus crop yield since World War II and at least $760 million in damages. Today also marks three weeks since the House sent the Senate a disaster relief bill that includes a critical lifeline for Florida’s citrus growers and the tens of thousands of jobs this industry supports in Florida’s rural communities.
“We have got to stop letting the perfect be the enemy of the good and get this disaster bill to the president’s desk as soon as possible. Senate Democrats are blocking this bill because they claim it does not do enough to help the people of Puerto Rico – yet, they fail to acknowledge that the House accommodated at least some these concerns, including additional funds for Puerto Rico in our final bill,” Rooney said.
“By refusing to negotiate and holding this bill hostage, Senate Democrats are delaying critical assistance to rebuild Puerto Rico’s devastated electric grid. They’re holding up urgently-needed support for those teachers and schools who are welcoming displaced students and their families. They’re delaying funds that families and communities across the country need to get back on their feet after having suffered through the real consequences of the costliest year ever for weather disasters in the United States. There were 69 Democrats in the House who supported this relief bill and put people over party – it’s time for their colleagues in the upper Chamber to do the same. The fate of Florida’s iconic citrus industry literally hangs in the balance.”