Bipartisan bill pushing to speed up disaster recovery projects

Washington D.C.

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) – New legislation on Capitol Hill could bring federal dollars to communities hit by natural disasters much quicker than ever before.

After a natural disaster hit his state of North Carolina, Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) said he was running into one big problem.

“We were getting the money from Washington down to Raleigh but it wasn’t getting to the communities,” Tillis said.

Certain projects were stalled because, under current law, local stakeholders applying for federal funding for mitigation projects have to wait until they receive final approval from FEMA before they can start construction.

That’s why Tillis and a bipartisan group of senators, including Sen. Doug Jones (D-AL), introduced a bill that would expedite the start of those projects.

“This bill is going to cut that red tape, streamline the process so these cities, counties, tribes and others can get that money quicker to try to rebuild,” Jones said.

The new bill would change FEMA’s grant eligibility requirements to allow states to begin construction immediately after a natural disaster hits.

Tillis and Jones said this change will help communities get back on their feet sooner.

“A lot of big projects this won’t affect but there are so many in Alabama that can be smaller projects or broken up into smaller projects that just could help make the rebuilding process a lot quicker,” Jones added.

They believe it can help communities rebuild stronger so they’re better prepared before the next disaster hits.

“Build up, make it less likely that the next hurricane will cause the same damage that the prior one did,” Tillis said.

Tillis said he believes this bill will get through Congress this year.

LATEST FROM NEXSTAR DC:

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Top Videos

Thursday Early Forecast

Thumbnail for the video titled "Thursday Early Forecast"

Tampa Mayor Castor on places of worship order

Thumbnail for the video titled "Tampa Mayor Castor on places of worship order"

Sheriff seeking arrest warrant against local pastor

Thumbnail for the video titled "Sheriff seeking arrest warrant against local pastor"

residents concerned about covid patient

Thumbnail for the video titled "residents concerned about covid patient"

Nurses union protesting lack of protective gear at HCA hospitals

Thumbnail for the video titled "Nurses union protesting lack of protective gear at HCA hospitals"

a group of past and present Tampa Bay Buccaneers decided to help the local community by donating food and supplies to seniors in the area

Thumbnail for the video titled "a group of past and present Tampa Bay Buccaneers decided to help the local community by donating food and supplies to seniors in the area"

Deposit Returned

Thumbnail for the video titled "Deposit Returned"

Tampa woman self-isolating with rescue ducks

Thumbnail for the video titled "Tampa woman self-isolating with rescue ducks"

Hillsborough County to use 2 hotels as quarantine, isolation sites for residents impacted by COVID-19

Thumbnail for the video titled "Hillsborough County to use 2 hotels as quarantine, isolation sites for residents impacted by COVID-19"

Invisible lines in sand cause confusion as Pinellas County beachgoers persist despite coronavirus orders

Thumbnail for the video titled "Invisible lines in sand cause confusion as Pinellas County beachgoers persist despite coronavirus orders"

NFL to begin season as scheduled in September

Thumbnail for the video titled "NFL to begin season as scheduled in September"

Businesses react

Thumbnail for the video titled "Businesses react"
More Local News

Trending Stories

get the app

News App

Weather App

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss