Grassley says $19B disaster bill is “good start” but much more is needed
WASHINGTON — While the US House gave final Congressional passage of a disaster relief package Monday night, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says it won’t go nearly far enough to bail out all Iowans who’ve been impacted by flooding. “This package is a good start of addressing the flooding needs of Iowa,” Grassley says. “I think not only me but a lot of other senators feel that there’s going to have to be a second disaster bill between now and September 30th.”
The 19-billion dollar relief package is comprehensive, Grassley says, but it only includes money to repair roads, bridges and levees that were damaged in the -first- round of flooding, and there’s been many millions of dollars -more- damage since March and April. “Just think, Burlington just had overruns of their levees and downtown flooded there this week, it wasn’t there before,” Grassley says. “Davenport, three or four weeks ago, then Missouri River flooding again, so, we haven’t calculated any of this.”
Grassley was pleased the package included his amendment to provide coverage for farmers who lost millions in corn and soybeans that was stored in bins which were inundated by flooding. Overall, Grassley says the disaster relief package should help those affected, especially in southwest Iowa, in their continued efforts to rebuild and recover. “You may start to help these communities with this money,” Grassley says, “but if it doesn’t last, including what we haven’t calculated yet in Iowa, then there’s going to have to be more spent.”
The bill that passed the House last night had passed the Senate last month. The president is expected to sign the measure into law yet this week.