Feds To Lift 2-Year Hold On $8.2B In Disaster Aid For Puerto Rico

Mack Rosenberg
January 15, 2020 - 1:55 pm
Puerto Rico Earthquake

Eric Rojas/Getty Images


NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — The federal government is lifting a nearly two-year hold on disaster relief aid to Puerto Rico following several earthquakes on the island.

As WCBS 880’s Mack Rosenberg reports, before Wednesday, Puerto Rico had received $1.5 billion from the Trump administration to help with recovery efforts from Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Irma.

The island will now receive $8.2 billion more to help with recovery efforts following a devastating 6.4-magnatiude earthquake. Though, Congress previously approved a total of $20 billion in aid.

Erica Gonzalez, with Power 4 Puerto Rico, told Rosenberg that Americans should not be fooled by the sudden assistance.

“It is no coincidence that the Trump administration made this move, which is overdue,” she said. “It's been breaking the law for many days now, many months.”

The Department of Housing and Urban Development missed a September deadline to come up with a plan for how the funding would be used.

“Congress authorized these funds 700 days ago, so in the meantime, the clock has been ticking on Puerto Rican lives,” Gonzalez said.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo traveled to Puerto Rico on Tuesday while promising New York would send building experts, engineers and mental health counselors to the ravaged island.