On January 15, 2013, the House considered and passed $50 billion for disaster assistance in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, which hit the U.S. at the end of October 2012. The Northeast-Midwest Institute’s Note to the Coalitions provided a summary of the bill and amendments proposed, as well as information on where the funds were appropriated. The House passed the main amendment, offered by Rep. Frelinghuysen (R-NJ), which added just over $30 billion to the original bill of $17 billion.
Additional amendments passed include:
· Bishop (R-UT): prohibits the Secretaries of Interior or Agriculture from acquiring federal land using funding in this bill
· Campbell (R-CA) and Blumenauer (D-OR): clarifies that the U.S. ACOE’s responsibility to construct projects at full Federal expense only applies to the funds appropriated in this bill
· Fleming (R-LA): decreases funding for the U.S. FWS by $9.8 million and prohibits rebuilding seawalls or buildings on islands in the Steward McKinney National Wildlife Refuge in Connecticut
· Flores (R-TX): strikes $150 million in funding for NOAA’s Regional Ocean Partnerships
· Huelskamp (R-KS): requires FEMA to disclose all disaster relief grants [language currently requires disclosure for grants of $1 million or more]
· Runyan (R-NJ): clarifies that appropriations included in the bill for fisheries can only be used by states hit by Hurricane Sandy and suffered a fisheries disaster
· Velazquez (D-NY): increases funding for the National Cemetery Administration by $1 million to repair veterans’ cemeteries
All other amendments were rejected or withdrawn, including an amendment offered by Rep. Mulvaney (R-SC), which would have required a 1.63% cut across all discretionary spending to pay for the original $17 billion in supplemental appropriations.
The package now goes to the Senate, which meets next week after the Inauguration.
For more information, contact , Director of the Great Lakes Washington Program at the Northeast-Midwest Institute, or , Legislative Director of the Northeast-Midwest Congressional Coalition.