Watch Kennedy’s comments here.
WASHINGTON – The Senate today voted on Sen. John Kennedy’s (R-La.) amendment to the Senate’s infrastructure bill. The amendment would provide $1.1 billion in disaster relief to Louisianians recovering from Hurricanes Laura, Delta and Zeta.
The aid would come through the Community Development Block Grant program. Neighborhoods and communities could use that funding for long-term disaster recovery needs, including repairs to infrastructure.
“Today, I offered the Senate an opportunity to help our people without adding a dime to the debt or taking a cent from taxpayers, and I’m incredibly disappointed they chose not to do that. It’s clear once again that President Biden must send a request for this disaster aid to Congress in order for Washington to grant disaster aid for Louisiana,” said Kennedy.
To pay for the aid, Kennedy’s amendment would use revenue from the Federal Communications Commission’s spectrum auction last year. That would leave the government with no need to borrow money or add to the deficit.
The Senate blocked the amendment.
Text of amendment is available here.
Background on requests for disaster relief:
Kennedy continues to support supplemental disaster relief for Louisiana as the state is still rebuilding after historic storms.
Once Congress receives a request for supplemental disaster aid from the White House, legislators can appropriate relief funds and send that bill to the president for his signature.
The White House has not yet made a request for supplemental relief for Louisiana, despite repeated requests from Louisiana’s congressional delegation.
- On August 2, Kennedy offered an amendment to the Senate’s infrastructure bill that would provide $1.1 billion in disaster relief to Louisianians recovering from Hurricanes Laura, Delta and Zeta.
- On July 21, Kennedy joined Louisiana’s congressional delegation in urging the Office of Management and Budget to prioritize Louisiana’s request for supplemental disaster relief.
- On July 15, Kennedy introduced and asked the Senate to pass the Gulf Coast Hurricane Aid Act of 2021. The bill would provide $1.1 billion in disaster relief to Louisianians recovering from historic storms. The Senate blocked the bill’s passage.
- On May 20, Kennedy spoke directly with Housing and Urban Development Secretary (HUD) Marcia Fudge about supplemental disaster relief for Louisiana.
- On May 19, Kennedy pressed HUD for answers about why the White House has been silent on providing disaster relief to southwest Louisiana.
- On May 18, Kennedy again urged President Biden to provide supplemental disaster relief for southwest Louisiana.
- On May 13, Kennedy helped introduce the Disaster Assistance for Rural Communities Act, which would allow rural homeowners, renters and small businesses to access disaster relief more easily in the wake of a natural disaster.
- In September 2020, Kennedy wrote to Senate leadership, Sens. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), to request that the Senate consider emergency supplemental aid to help Louisiana residents recover from Hurricane Laura.