Legislature Corner: Congress Makes Progress on Improving Federal Disaster Recovery Responders

Representatives Graves and Plaskett (Submitted photo)

Congresswoman Plaskett released the following statement lauding the passage of H.R. 5774 Expediting Disaster Recovery Act.

“I am pleased that the Expediting Disaster Recovery Act (H.R. 5774) passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support, and I am confident we will soon have a companion measure considered by the Senate and then to the President’s desk for signature into law.

“The passage of this legislation would create a separate funding stream for FEMA after the declaration of a major disaster to expeditiously, within 30 days, allocate additional assistance to cover unmet needs because of such disaster. This separate funding stream will allow FEMA to quickly disburse funds to assist with restoration projects and impacted communities. This funding can be used for repair, restoration and replacement of damaged facilities and assistance to individuals and households.

“This legislation would allow the use of funding to make homes habitable during the disaster-recovery process or, if more cost-effective, provide assistance for permanent or semi-permanent housing.

“To ensure accurate reporting, this legislation would require localities to submit reports six months after receiving funds, and every six months after that until funds are expended.

“I am tremendously proud and grateful to those consistently contributing to our progress as a people. Virgin Islanders have remained incredibly strong in the process of rebuilding not only our homes and infrastructure but our very lives. VI Strong, always.”