The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Top News

December 6, 2012

Democrats: Obama to ask for $50 billion Sandy aid

WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Barack Obama plans to ask Congress for about $50 billion in additional emergency aid for states hit by Superstorm Sandy, Democrats on Capitol Hill said Wednesday.

House Secretary Shaun Donovan told a Senate Appropriations subcommittee that the administration is still working on a request for a supplemental spending bill to provide the aid and expects to send it to Congress this week.

“We do not have a specific number,” Donovan said.

The price tag is expected to be anywhere between $45 billion and $55 billion. Two Senate Democratic aides, speaking on condition of anonymity because the request is still being assembled, put the number in the neighborhood of $50 billion.

“The president isn’t going to leave New York, New Jersey or the entire region to fight for itself,” Donovan, who is coordinating the government’s Sandy recovery efforts for Obama, told reporters after the hearing.

Donovan urged Congress to take action in “the next few weeks” on the administration’s upcoming request.

On Tuesday, the head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Craig Fugate, said the government’s disaster relief fund still has $4.8 billion, enough to pay for recovery efforts into early spring. So far the government has spent about $2 billion in the 11 states struck by the late October storm, one of the worst ever in the Northeast.

New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are together seeking about $83 billion in aid. Donovan described that figure as more of a damage estimate, saying some of might be covered by private insurance and other already-funded government programs.

Given the recent budget talks and the strong pressures against new spending, Congress is not expected to approve large amounts of additional money all at once.

The storm devastated coastal communities from North Carolina to Maine, killing more than 120 people. New York and New Jersey were hit the hardest.

Obama can request up to $5.4 billion more without hitting a spending ceiling. Several Republicans have said that more than that should be matched by spending cuts in other federal programs.

Donovan said people who lost homes or businesses are waiting desperately for help. He said it would be a mistake for Congress to quickly approve the $5.4 billion as a “down payment” and defer until next year providing additional funding.

 

1
Text Only
Top News
  • Iowa State says data breach could affect thousands

    The Social Security numbers of nearly 30,000 people who enrolled at Iowa State University over a 17-year period were exposed in a data breach, school officials announced Tuesday.

    Five information technology servers on the Ames campus were hacked, and those servers contained the Social Security numbers of people who took certain classes at the school between 1995 and 2012, ISU officials said in a news release. There is no evidence that any of the personal files were accessed, the school said, and the records didn't contain student financial information.

    April 22, 2014

  • Iowa woman arrested after child falls from window

    A Manchester woman has been arrested after her toddler fell from a second-story apartment window.

    The Manchester Police Department says 27-year-old Stacy Neuhaus was arrested Monday in Iowa City. She faces charges of child endangerment. Court records do not list an attorney.

    April 22, 2014

  • Screen Shot 2014-04-22 at 4.42.47 PM.png VIDEO: Leopard attacks crowd in India

    A leopard caused panic in the city of Chandrapur when it sprung from the roof of a house and charged at rescue workers.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • In cuffs... 'Warlock' in West Virginia accused of sexual assault

    Police in West Virginia say a man claiming to be a “warlock” used promises of magical spells to lure children into committing sexual acts with him.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cats outsmart the researchers

    I knew a lot had been written about dogs, and I assumed there must be at least a handful of studies on cats. But after weeks of scouring the scientific world for someone - anyone - who studied how cats think, all I was left with was this statement, laughed over the phone to me by one of the world's top animal cognition experts, a Hungarian scientist named Ádám Miklósi.

    April 22, 2014

  • The top 12 government programs ever

    Which federal programs and policies succeed in being cost-effective and targeting those who need them most? These two tests are obvious: After all, why would we spend taxpayers' money on a program that isn't worth what it costs or helps those who do not need help?

    April 22, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Basketball stars may linger on campus a while longer

    The NBA seems serious about raising its minimum age, which could signal the end of the one-and-done era in college basketball.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • AGENDA: 4-24-14 Easton Valley Board of Education Special Meeting

    The Easton Valley Community School District Board of Education will hold a special meeting April 24 at 6 p.m. at the Easton Valley Elementary School.

    April 22, 2014

  • 'Piles and piles' of bodies in S. Sudan slaughter

    Gunmen in South Sudan who targeted civilians including children and the elderly left "piles and piles" of bodies, many of them in a mosque and a hospital, the U.N.'s top humanitarian official in the country said Tuesday.

    Toby Lanzer told The Associated Press in a phone interview Tuesday that the ethnically targeted killings in a provincial capital are "quite possibly a game-changer" for a conflict that has been raging since mid-December and that has exposed longstanding ethnic hostilities.

    April 22, 2014

  • Biden: Russia must 'stop talking and start acting'

    U.S. Vice President Joe Biden warned Russia on Tuesday that "it's time to stop talking and start acting" to reduce tension in Ukraine, offering a show of support for the besieged nation as an international agreement aimed at stemming its ongoing crisis appeared in doubt.

    Standing alongside acting Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, Biden called on Moscow to encourage pro-Russia separatists in eastern Ukraine to vacate government buildings and checkpoints, accept amnesty and "address their grievances politically."

    April 22, 2014

AP Video