At this morning’s House Republican Leadership Stakeout, Rep. John Culberson (R-TX) joined Speaker Ryan, Leader McCarthy, and Chair McMorris Rodgers to highlight the importance of the emergency funding bill the House passed today.
“We are so grateful — all of us in Texas and Louisiana — for the immediate response of the Congress, for the immediate response of the American people,” said Rep. Culberson. “We today are going to pass legislation in the House that will provide an immediate cash infusion to help the victims recover, to help them with hotel expenses, with all the other things they did not anticipate two, three weeks ago. Their lives were transformed in a moment.”
“The scale of the flooding is unimaginable,” he continued. “My family’s lost everything. My brother lost his home. They’ve been utterly destroyed. All my in-laws have lost everything. 70 percent of Houston and Harris County was underwater. The entire city of Orange and Port Arthur was underwater at some point. The rain just wouldn’t stop. I spent all last week out in neighborhoods helping rescue people, using boats and trucks and waders to pull people out of homes.
“The scale of the tragedy is unimaginable, but in the midst of all of this and all the suffering, it really reflects the American character how people from all over the country stepped up to help Houstonians recover from this. In the neighborhoods last Saturday, I met a team of four guys with a boat from Florida who simply got in their car and their truck and drove the boat to Houston to help pull people out.
“And a guy from Michigan was out in the neighborhoods. We had in the midst of the storms, on the second day when it was just catastrophic flooding, I got a phone call from [Rep.] Garret Graves of Louisiana, who said the ‘Cajun Navy’ wants to come help Houston. I didn’t know there was such a thing. 110 trucks just spontaneously got together, pulling 100 boats from central Louisiana, carrying thousands of meals of Jambalaya and red beans and rice, and diapers, and water, and radios. Help is on the way.”
What’s in the disaster relief funding bill?
$7.85 billion in emergency funding, including $7.4 billion for FEMA’s Disaster Relief Fund (DRF) and $450 million to support the Small Business Administration’s disaster loan program to assist small businesses and homeowners begin to rebuild.