Senator Dan Coats (R-Ind.) today offered an alternative supplemental appropriations proposal to fund the immediate needs of the areas impacted by Hurricane Sandy. The Coats proposal would provide $23.8 billion in emergency funding.
"The victims of Hurricane Sandy need federal assistance to help them rebuild their lives and their communities as quickly as possible," said Coats, ranking Republican on the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security. "This legislation provides funding for the immediate needs of the impacted regions while allowing time to review additional requests. We need to make sure that each taxpayer dollar spent is going to meet the needs of those affected by this devastating storm, rather than funding unrelated or unsubstantiated projects."
The current bill on the Senate floor is a $60.4 billion package containing a number of extraneous items that are unrelated to helping the victims of Hurricane Sandy, including:
$13 billion in mitigation funding for the next potential storm;
$500 million for projects from previous disasters unrelated to Hurricane Sandy;
$56 million for tsunami cleanup;
And other unrelated projects and earmarks.
The Coats proposal is a $23.8 billion package focused on delivering immediate relief to victims of Hurricane Sandy through March. The Coats plan:
Provides funding to help states to begin rebuilding, while allowing time to review and plan for additional funding needs.
Removes major new authorizing language included in current bill.
Eliminates $13 billion in mitigation funding.
Focuses on Hurricane Sandy only, not responses to previous or future disasters.
Eliminates funding for non-Hurricane Sandy projects:
No money for fisheries in Alaska.
No money to fix museum roofs in Washington, D.C.
No money for wildfire in Colorado.
No money for tree planting.
No money for a water resources priority study.
No money for Legal Serves Corporation.