Democrats: Obama to ask for $50 billion Sandy aid

President Barack Obama plans to ask Congress for about $50 billion in additional emergency aid for states hit by
Associated Press
Dec 5, 2012

House Secretary Shaun Donovan told a Senate Appropriations subcommittee that the administration is still working on a request for a supplemental spending bill to provide the aid and expects to send it to Congress this week.

"We do not have a specific number," Donovan said.

The price tag is expected to be anywhere between $45 billion and $55 billion. Two Senate Democratic aides, speaking on condition of anonymity because the request is still being assembled, put the number in the neighborhood of $50 billion.

"The president isn't going to leave New York, New Jersey or the entire region to fight for itself," Donovan, who is coordinating the government's Sandy recovery efforts for Obama, told reporters after the hearing.

Donovan urged Congress to take action in "the next few weeks" on the administration's upcoming request.

On Tuesday, the head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Craig Fugate, said the government's disaster relief fund still has $4.8 billion, enough to pay for recovery efforts into early spring. So far the government has spent about $2 billion in the 11 states struck the late October storm, one of the worst ever in the Northeast.

New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are together seeking about $83 billion in aid. Donovan described that figure as more of damage estimate, saying some of might be covered by private insurance and other already-funded government programs.

Given the recent budget talks and the strong pressures against new spending, Congress is not expected to approve large amounts of additional money all at once.

The storm devastated coastal communities from North Carolina to Maine, killing more than 120 people. New York and New Jersey were hit the hardest.

Obama can request up to $5.4 billion more without hitting a spending ceiling. Several Republicans have said that more than that should be matched by spending cuts in other federal programs.

Donovan said people who lost homes or businesses are waiting desperately for help. He said it would be a mistake for Congress to quickly approve the $5.4 billion as a "down payment" and defer until next year providing additional funding.

"A down payment simply means that these families, these communities are going to be waiting for months or longer to get on with their lives," he said.

Donovan said requiring spending cuts in other federal programs to cover the cost of additional disaster aid makes no sense. "We believe strongly that the country has to come together even in difficult times and stand behind places that have been devastated," he said.

Officials in the affected state expect the fight for more recovery money will last for months and probably require a series of spending bills. They also fear it will fade as a priority next year.

 

Comments

Kimo

Ask the Chinese for another loan.

the office cat

Let them eat cake...

jon491

Where are the other countries with aid?

2cents

Egypt, third party check :)

the office cat

Isn't that 'Big Government'? Oh, but that's okay if it's a Republican state?

Randy_Marsh

Obama doesnt like white people, Ask Nashville.

eriemom

Nashville isn't lilly white.

"At the 2010 census, the racial makeup of the city was 60.5% White (56.3% non-Hispanic white), 28.4% African American, 0.3% American Indian and Alaska Native, 3.1% Asian, 0.1% Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander, 2.5% from two or more races. 10.0% of the total population was of Hispanic or Latino origin (they may be of any race).[41] The non-Hispanic White population was 79.5% in 1970.[Wikipedia)

jamo

People who build right on the beach should not recieve federal aid. They knew the risks before building or buying a home or business there.

Contango

@ jamo:

Federal flood ins. is taxpayer subsidized. No private co. will touch it.

We're footin' the bill and they get a new house with a great view.

Thankyouverymuch.

Randy_Marsh

@jama
So all of new orleans should not be covered? Its 10 ft below the water line next to a lake and a gulf, Who would build there?

jamo

I said people who build on the beaches. New Orleans is a different story. The people who live there rely on the government (the army corps of engineers) to protect their city from flooding.

Randy_Marsh

"They knew the risks before building or buying a home or business there." That would be New Orleans, Because they knew the risk.

There you go again

I'm surpised obama is askng for the money- thought he would just promise these states a bunch of money and then forget about them. Isn't that his modus oprandi?

Whiskey Tango F...

what about their insurance? I agree with jamo. If you build on the ocean you accept the risk. If i build in a flood plain then i expect that sooner or later it will flood.

old dog

I agree with Jamo and Whiskey, the nimnals that live there should have insurance and they should know better, but Obie will take care of them.

Contango

Call up "The Bernanke" and have him crank up the presses. How much ya need Mr. President?

2012 - $16T in debt
2016 - $20T in debt.

"...By a continuing process of inflation, governments can confiscate, secretly and unobserved, an important part of the wealth of their citizens

… As inflation proceeds and the real value of the currency fluctuates wildly, all permanent relations between debtors and creditors, which form the ultimate foundation of capitalism, become so utterly disordered as to be almost meaningless."

- Lord Maynard Keynes, "The Economic Consequences of the Peace"

"The Keynesian Depression":

http://seekingalpha.com/article/...

--------------------------

@ Kimo:

They ain't buyin' those U.S. Treasuries like they used to. They're starting to figure that we're gonna become deadbeats.

Kimo

Kasich "appropriated" over 700 million from the Ohio Lottery profits for his rainy day fund. He can cut them a check; it was a "rainy day".

Contango

@ Kimo:

The best time to fix the roof is when it's sunny.

Even Keynes knew to save for a rainy day.

(Move to Dem heaven IL, it's ALWAYS raining.)

Progressive idiots forgot that Keynes didn't say: Spend, spend, spend. But, hey, it helps get you elected.

“A government with the policy to rob Peter to pay Paul can be assured of the support of Paul.”

- Geo. Bernard Shaw.

Sitting In The ...

I hate to say it but I have little sympathy for people stupid enough to build homes Ten feet from the ocean then when the inevitable happens there pissed because the entire country isn't there to fix their community.