Disaster relief package blocked in House

Washington-DC

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — A $19.1 billion disaster relief package to help communities slammed by severe weather has hit another roadblock.

The package to help those affected by hurricanes, wildfires and floods passed the Senate Thursday with bipartisan support. On Friday, Rep. Chip Roy, R-Texas, objected, stalling it in the House. He says it should include money for border security.

“There’s no reason this disaster relief funding bill shouldn’t have included the quite modest $4.4 billion,” he said on the House floor.

But during recent negotiations, the White House dropped its demand for that border funding and changed course on allowing $1.4 billion for Puerto Rico. The president tweeted the package will get his support.

After the plan passed the Senate, Republican Sen. Joni Ernst, whose state of Iowa will get money for flooding relief, called it a solid compromise that is “palatable for both parties.” It includes $3 billion to rebuild military bases, repair infrastructure and help farmers who lost crops.

With Congress heading home for recess, Roy’s objection is delaying the package at least another week and a half. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., called his move a last-minute sabotage and said there will be a vote as soon as the first week of June.

The plan is ultimately expected to pass the Democrat-controlled House. After it is signed into law, it will take about 60 days for the money to be distributed.

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