Houston lawmakers press Senate for action on Harvey recovery funds

Updated 11:43 am, Friday, February 2, 2018

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File- This Sept. 4, 2017, file photo shows Mariko Shimmi, right, helping carry items out of the home of Ken Tani in a neighborhood still flooded from Hurricane Harvey in Houston. Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017, was the last day of an intense and destructive hurricane season that included 17 named storms, 10 of which became hurricanes. The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season will be remembered for a deadly trio of storms, Harvey, Irma and Maria, that ravaged Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico and numerous other islands. The storms killed at least 441 people and did about $369 billion in damage.(AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File) less
File- This Sept. 4, 2017, file photo shows Mariko Shimmi, right, helping carry items out of the home of Ken Tani in a neighborhood still flooded from Hurricane Harvey in Houston. Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017, was … more
Photo: Gregory Bull, STF

Snow falls in downtown on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, in Houston.
Snow falls in downtown on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, in Houston.
Photo: Elizabeth Conley, Houston Chronicle

Louisiana Street is flooded where it becomes I-10 in downtown Houston as Hurricane Harvey inches its way through the area on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017.
Louisiana Street is flooded where it becomes I-10 in downtown Houston as Hurricane Harvey inches its way through the area on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017.
Photo: Elizabeth Conley/Houston Chronicle

Snow falls in front of downtown Houston Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017.
Snow falls in front of downtown Houston Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017.
Photo: Michael Ciaglo, Houston Chronicle

A car makes it way down Louisiana Street in Downtown Houston as Hurricane Harvey inches its way through the area on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017. ( Elizabeth Conley / Houston Chronicle )
A car makes it way down Louisiana Street in Downtown Houston as Hurricane Harvey inches its way through the area on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017. ( Elizabeth Conley / Houston Chronicle )
Photo: Elizabeth Conley/Houston Chronicle

Snow falls in downtown on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, in Houston.
Snow falls in downtown on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, in Houston.
Photo: Elizabeth Conley, Houston Chronicle

A crosswalk sign floats down Fanin Street in downtown Houston as Hurricane Harvey inches its way through the area on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017.
A crosswalk sign floats down Fanin Street in downtown Houston as Hurricane Harvey inches its way through the area on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017.
Photo: Elizabeth Conley/Houston Chronicle

A Cypress man captured the beauty of Houston’s snowfall on Dec. 8, 2017.
A Cypress man captured the beauty of Houston’s snowfall on Dec. 8, 2017.
Photo: Axel Kirchgessner

Homes in the Cinco Ranch area are surrounded by water from Barker Reservoir on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Homes in the Cinco Ranch area are surrounded by water from Barker Reservoir on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Photo: Mark Mulligan, Staff Photographer

A Houston man captured drone footage of Houston’s snow on Dec. 8, 2017.
A Houston man captured drone footage of Houston’s snow on Dec. 8, 2017.
Photo: Sam Clayton

Homes just east of Beltway 8 are inundated with water from the overflowing Buffalo Bayou north of Briar Forest Dr. on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Homes just east of Beltway 8 are inundated with water from the overflowing Buffalo Bayou north of Briar Forest Dr. on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Photo: Mark Mulligan/Mark Mulligan / Houston Chronicle

A Houston man captured drone footage of Houston’s snow on Dec. 8, 2017.
A Houston man captured drone footage of Houston’s snow on Dec. 8, 2017.
Photo: Sam Clayton

Homes in the Cinco Ranch area are surrounded by water from Barker Reservoir, on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Homes in the Cinco Ranch area are surrounded by water from Barker Reservoir, on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Photo: Mark Mulligan/Mark Mulligan / Houston Chronicle

A Houston man captured drone footage of Houston’s snow on Dec. 8, 2017.
A Houston man captured drone footage of Houston’s snow on Dec. 8, 2017.
Photo: Sam Clayton

Homes just east of Beltway 8 are inundated with water from the overflowing Buffalo Bayou north of Briar Forest Dr., on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Homes just east of Beltway 8 are inundated with water from the overflowing Buffalo Bayou north of Briar Forest Dr., on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Photo: Mark Mulligan/Mark Mulligan / Houston Chronicle

A Houston man captured drone footage of Houston’s snow on Dec. 8, 2017.
A Houston man captured drone footage of Houston’s snow on Dec. 8, 2017.
Photo: Sam Clayton

Homes in the Cinco Ranch area are surrounded by water from Barker Reservoir on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Homes in the Cinco Ranch area are surrounded by water from Barker Reservoir on Sept. 2, 2017, in Houston.
Photo: Mark Mulligan, Staff Photographer

Reader submitted photo shows the view of the 18th hole on the Lakes Course on Aug. 27, 2017 from Kingwood Barrington subdivision.
Reader submitted photo shows the view of the 18th hole on the Lakes Course on Aug. 27, 2017 from Kingwood Barrington subdivision.
Photo: Colleen Burghardt Ulrich

Kingwood residents woke up to snow-covered grounds on Dec. 8, 2017.
Kingwood residents woke up to snow-covered grounds on Dec. 8, 2017.
Photo: Kaitlyn Harmon/Courtesy To The Houston Chronicle

Kingwood residents walk through heavy rain from Tropical Storm Harvey , Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017.
Kingwood residents walk through heavy rain from Tropical Storm Harvey , Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017.
Photo: Jason Fochtman/Houston Chronicle

Kingwood residents woke up to snow-covered grounds on Dec. 8, 2017.
Kingwood residents woke up to snow-covered grounds on Dec. 8, 2017.
Photo: Kaitlyn Harmon/Courtesy To The Houston Chronicle

Women carry out belongings from an apartment under water on Houston Avenue near Woodland Park after heavy rain from Hurricane Harvey fell overnight, Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017, in Houston.
Women carry out belongings from an apartment under water on Houston Avenue near Woodland Park after heavy rain from Hurricane Harvey fell overnight, Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017, in Houston.
Photo: Karen Warren, Houston Chronicle

Snow in Kingwood!!!
Snow in Kingwood!!!
Photo: Sherri Kendrick/Courtesy To The Houston Chronicle

A Texas flag hangs from a home surrounded by floodwaters from Harvey in The Woodlands on Tuesday. There’s no reversing the damages wrought by Harvey and the effects of climate change, but there are policies that can be put in place to mitigate future such events. less
A Texas flag hangs from a home surrounded by floodwaters from Harvey in The Woodlands on Tuesday. There’s no reversing the damages wrought by Harvey and the effects of climate change, but there are policies … more
Photo: Luke Sharrett / Bloomberg

A wooded area near College Park High School is pictured covered in snow on Friday, Dec. 8, 2017.
A wooded area near College Park High School is pictured covered in snow on Friday, Dec. 8, 2017.
Photo: Michael Minasi/Houston Chronicle

A man with a bike stands in flood water as he took cover under a tree to get out of a heavy downpour at Houston Avenue near Woodland Park after heavy rain from Hurricane Harvey fell overnight, Sunday, Aug. 27, 2017, in Houston. less
A man with a bike stands in flood water as he took cover under a tree to get out of a heavy downpour at Houston Avenue near Woodland Park after heavy rain from Hurricane Harvey fell overnight, Sunday, Aug. 27, … more
Photo: Karen Warren, Houston Chronicle

Snow pics from The Woodlands at 2:05 a.m. on Dec. 8, 2017.
Snow pics from The Woodlands at 2:05 a.m. on Dec. 8, 2017.
Photo: Alex Araya/Courtesy To The Houston Chronicle

A statue of George P. Mitchell, founder of The Woodlands, is pictured dusted with snow on Dec. 8, 2017, at Town Green Park.
A statue of George P. Mitchell, founder of The Woodlands, is pictured dusted with snow on Dec. 8, 2017, at Town Green Park.
Photo: Michael Minasi/Houston Chronicle

The garage of a home is seen surrounded by floodwaters from Hurricane Harvey in The Woodlands on Aug. 29, 2017. 
The garage of a home is seen surrounded by floodwaters from Hurricane Harvey in The Woodlands on Aug. 29, 2017. 
Photo: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg)

A garland with ornaments is pictured dusted with snow on Friday, Dec. 8, 2017, at Market Street in The Woodlands.
A garland with ornaments is pictured dusted with snow on Friday, Dec. 8, 2017, at Market Street in The Woodlands.
Photo: Michael Minasi/Houston Chronicle

WASHINGTON – In a sign of growing impatience, a group of Houston-area lawmakers from both political parties joined in a letter to Senate leaders Friday demanding “prompt” action on an $81 billion disaster relief package that has been held up in partisan gridlock since December.

With all signs pointing to another postponement of a broader budget and immigration deal tied to the disaster funding, a dozen House members from Texas signed on to the letter pleading for Senate action on a House-passed bill providing recovery funds for the victims of Hurricane Harvey and other natural disasters.

“This bill was sent to the Senate for consideration in December,” the lawmakers wrote. “We are now entering February with no action by the U.S. Senate. We write asking for prompt consideration… We have constituents who after almost six months, remain in transitional housing and homes that lack weatherization as Texas remains in the grip of an unusually cold winter.”

The House passed the disaster aid package on December 21, but in the Senate the money remains mired in a series of stop-gap funding measures tied to the ongoing partisan battle over immigration and the legal status of “Dreamers,” of young people brought into the country illegally as children.

The letter noted that Congress has passed two small emergency aid bills covering just a fraction of the costs of the Gulf Coast devastation that took the lives of 88 Texans and caused an estimated $125 billion in damage.

The letter was signed by Texas Republicans Pete Olson, Randy Weber, Brian Babin, Blake Farenthold, John Culberson, Michael McCaul, Ted Poe and Kevin Brady. It also was signed by Democrats Sheila Jackson Lee, Gene Green, Al Green, and Filemon Vela.

via Houston Chronicle http://ift.tt/2FENcbA

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