Carolina senators lead push for Florence federal assistance

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Sunday, U.S. Sens. Thom Tillis (R-NC), Richard Burr (R-NC), Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Tim Scott (R-SC) applauded the House for granting their request for a $1.68 billion downpayment for Hurricane Florence disaster relief in the Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill. The relief includes $1.14 billion for North Carolina and $540 million for South Carolina.

The senators made the formal request for a $1.68 billion down payment in Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery Program funding in a letter to appropriators earlier this week. The CDBG-DR grants would support a variety of disaster recovery activities in North Carolina and South Carolina, including housing redevelopment and rebuilding, business assistance, economic revitalization, and infrastructure repair.

“This has been a truly Team Carolina effort, beginning before Florence even made landfall. We have had productive meetings and conversations with Congressional leaders to secure disaster relief and an initial down payment,” said Sen. Tillis. “I’m pleased our $1.68 billion request, including $1.14 billion of relief for North Carolina, was included in the House bill, and we’ll continue to work together with Senate leadership to see through that a major down payment is included in the final legislation.

“This is only the beginning of our efforts to ensure North and South Carolina have federal resources to recover from the devastation caused by Florence and that hardworking families, small businesses, and farmers have the assistance they need to rebuild and get back on their feet” he added.

“The $1.68 billion in disaster relief we’ve secured will allow tens of thousands of North Carolinians who lost their homes and businesses to begin rebuilding their lives,” said Sen. Burr. “Because the funding comes through Community Development Block Grants, we will be able to better transition from an emergency response to long-term recovery efforts, knowing the path ahead of us is long and arduous.

“Throughout this process, I’ve been impressed by the coordination and rapid response from local, state and federal officials,” he added. “I am grateful we’ve secured funding to continue this vital work.”

House grants $1.68 billion request