Jun 3, 2019 - Politics & Policy

House passes $19.1 billion disaster relief bill after repeated delays

A man repairing hurricane-struck homes in the Panhandle.

Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

The House passed $19.1 billion in aid Monday for states hit by natural disasters in recent months.

Why it matters: The funding is long-awaited by communities recovering from flooding, hurricanes and other natural disasters. The package was cleared by the Senate last month, but was blocked three times by individual House Republicans who . It will now go to the desk of President Trump, who is expected to sign it.

Details: The bill provides about $900 million for Puerto Rico — $605 million in nutritional assistance and $304 million in Community Development Block Grants. This was previously a major sticking point for the president, who believes the island should not receive any more government aid.

  • The bill also includes a provision freeing up $8.9 billion in previously withheld aid to Puerto Rico in 90 days, according to a release from Sen. Patrick Leahy's (D-Vt.) office.
  • The additional funds will go to repairing damaged infrastructure, reducing the risk of future floods and hurricanes, rebuilding military bases and supporting farmers and the U.S. Forest Service, among other things.
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