disaster relief

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Trump Officials Divert FEMA Funds to Border

Disaster relief cash pulled to pay for courtrooms

(Newser) - The Trump administration is shifting money from disaster relief to immigration enforcement—even with Tropical Storm Dorian threatening a direct hit on Puerto Rico. Officials confirmed Tuesday that $271 million in Homeland Security funding is being diverted to Immigration and Customs Enforcement to pay for detention beds and temporary courtrooms,... More »

Congress Finally Approves $19B Disaster Aid Bill

Trump deletes tweet after calling for Senate to approve bill it passed 2 weeks ago

(Newser) - A long-delayed $19.1 billion disaster aid bill sailed through the House on Monday and headed to President Trump for his expected signature, overcoming months of infighting, misjudgment, and a feud between Trump and congressional Democrats. Lawmakers gave the measure final congressional approval by 354-58 in the House's first... More »

A Republican Again Prevents House From Passing Disaster Aid

John Rose calls spending 'irresponsible'

(Newser) - A House Republican lawmaker on Thursday prevented the House from sending a multibillion-dollar disaster relief bill to President Trump. This time, it was John Rose of Tennessee who objected when the package came up for unanimous consent—the only way legislation can pass when the House is on recess, CNN... More »

Again, One Lawmaker Blocks Disaster Aid Passage

Kentucky Republican stalls $19B package

(Newser) - For the second time in less than a week, a House Republican has prevented a $19.1 billion federal disaster aid package from passing Congress. That makes it more likely that the measure won't be approved until the House returns from recess next Monday, the Hill reports. When the... More »

Lawmaker Single-Handedly Blocks Disaster Relief Bill

Conservative Rep. Chip Roy of Texas objects and scuttles $19B in aid, temporarily

(Newser) - Chip Roy is a freshman congressman from Texas who just blipped onto the national political radar with a controversial move. The conservative Republican single-handedly blocked approval of a $19.1 billion relief bill Friday for regions around the US recovering from hurricanes and other disasters. The details of what happened,... More »

Puerto Rico Donations Found Rotting in Trailers

National Guard, elections office swap quotes in the media

(Newser) - Several trailers' worth of donated water, food, and other supplies designated for victims of Hurricane Maria have been found rotting in a Puerto Rico parking lot, the New York Times reports. A local radio station posted a video of at least 10 rat-infested trailers outside a state elections office Friday... More »

They're FEMA's Elite Rescuers, Yet Some Do Little Rescuing

Bureaucracy, too much gear, and other inefficiencies are marring response efforts

(Newser) - They're called the "national Swiss Army knife of emergency response," teams of highly trained first responders sent by FEMA across the US when disaster strikes. But when hurricanes pummeled Texas, Florida, and Puerto Rico last summer, many of the thousands deployed via the agency's National Urban... More »

Trump Talks Pulling FEMA Amid Struggle to Help Puerto Rico

Chuck Schumer says FEMA's work is 'not even close to done'

(Newser) - President Trump is warning that hurricane relief for Puerto Rico has an end date even as federal officials acknowledge a massive food shortage on the island three weeks after Hurricane Maria. "We cannot keep FEMA, the Military & the First Responders, who have been amazing (under the most difficult... More »

Tyler Perry Gives Houston $1M, With Some of It for Joel Osteen

A quarter of the money goes to Osteen's church

(Newser) - Tyler Perry is donating $1 million to relief efforts in Texas following Hurricane Harvey, and a full 25% of that amount is going to Joel Osteen's Houston megachurch. Perry announced the donations in a video on Facebook , People reports, and he insisted that though people were upset when the... More »

Red Cross VP Squirms in Interview on How Donations Are Distributed

I 'really don't' know, exec admits to NPR on Harvey relief efforts

(Newser) - In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, many have criticized the American Red Cross, with Facebook and others even directing those who want to help to donate to a different charity . The criticism isn't new: As NPR notes, there have long been reports that ARC misstates how donor dollars are... More »

Want to Help After Harvey? Don't Donate to the Red Cross

Jonathan M. Katz argues that the organization is flawed

(Newser) - Hurricane Harvey has devastated Texas, and it's natural to want to help. But don't try to help by donating money to the American Red Cross, journalist and author Jonathan M. Katz writes on Slate . The disaster relief organization may be iconic, but it's far from effective,... More »

Red Cross Calls Sandy Spending 'Trade Secret'

Won't say how it spent the $300M it raised

(Newser) - The Red Cross raised more than $300 million for Superstorm Sandy disaster relief, but it is refusing to say how it raised or spent the cash. After ProPublica filed a public records request for the information, the Red Cross hired a law firm to block the release of some documents.... More »

US Carrier Arrives in Philippines Amid Logistics Nightmare

Volunteer surgeons working by flashlight in disaster zone

(Newser) - Help is finally beginning to reach hundreds of thousands of people struggling to survive in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan. The USS George Washington and two US cruisers have arrived in the Philippines and will distribute food, water, and medicine, as well as assist search and rescue operations in what... More »

Scientist: Turn ICBMs Into Disaster-Relief Tools

They could deliver supplies to hard-to-reach areas

(Newser) - A Japanese scientist has an intriguing idea on how to convert mothballed ICBMs in the US and Russia from instruments of war: Use them to deliver supplies to hard-to-reach areas after disasters. "These rocket engines are still functioning," Huai-Chien Chang of the University of Tokyo tells LiveScience . "... More »

Next for Nyad: 48-Hour Swim for Sandy Relief

Mercifully, in a pool this time

(Newser) - A month after her 53-hour swim from Cuba to the US , 64-year-old Diana Nyad is ready to get her feet wet again. Up next: a 48-hour swim to raise money for Hurricane Sandy recovery. "I'm from New York City and last year I was in town right after... More »

Red Cross Sitting on a Third of Sandy Donations

$110M remains unspent

(Newser) - The Red Cross was the top recipient of donations after Superstorm Sandy, bringing in $303 million to help victims. But as of mid-April, $110 million of that remained unused, the organization says. Though the Red Cross—and some disaster relief experts—says that's a good move, allowing it to... More »

NY Rep to Okla. Senator: I'll Overlook Your Hypocrisy

Inhofe opposed Sandy aid but wants tornado aid

(Newser) - You knew this was coming: Peter King, who fought hard for Superstorm Sandy aid for his home state of New York, thinks there's "a lot of hypocrisy" when it comes to lawmakers who opposed Sandy aid but are in favor of tornado aid. The subject of his attention... More »

Jon Stewart Rips House GOP Over Sandy Relief

Republican House majority is our other major disaster

(Newser) - Jon Stewart unloaded on the House Republican majority in an epic segment last night about the Sandy relief bill debacle . Even when the House eventually approved $9.7 billion in aid for storm victims, that was far from the $60 billion the Senate approved. It's voting on all those... More »

Stars Rock '12-12-12,' Raise $30M for Sandy

Springsteen, McCartney, Bon Jovi come together for storm relief

(Newser) - Bruce Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi, Paul McCartney, and Kanye West were just a few of the music and screen legends who raised millions for Sandy relief last night. Appearing on TV, radio, the Web, and in movie theaters, the 12-12-12 concert had a potential audience of some 2 billion, USA ... More »

Chris Christie: Treat Us Like Katrina Victims

Governor makes pitch for more federal aid

(Newser) - New York and New Jersey are looking for federal aid in their ongoing Hurricane Sandy relief efforts, and they're not being modest in their requests. "We expect to be treated in exactly the same way that the victims of Katrina were treated," Chris Christie said—a statement... More »

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