In letters sent to House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Tuesday, Council Member Dan Halloran called for the immediate passage of a new Sandy relief bill without the unrelated pork in the current bill from the Senate.
Rather than echo New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and Rep. Peter King in calling for the House to vote on the Senate’s bill, Halloran asked for a new, pork-free bill to provide nothing but desperately needed relief for actual storm victims in the Northeast.
Halloran’s letters emphasized the immediate need for a new, fair aid bill and criticized the Senate-drafted relief bill, which contains more than $20 billion in spending not directly related to Sandy damage. Among the wide-reaching pork is funding for fisheries in Alaska, tree planting in Ohio and improvements to the Kennedy Space Center.
Halloran urged his Council colleagues to do the same, commenting, “Both Republicans and Democrats have played a dangerous game with our citizens’ money and its one we can ill afford to continue. It’s time for a real change. We need a relief bill that’s about relief and nothing else.”
The letters were sent a few hours before Speaker Boehner assured Northeast officials that the Senate-drafted bill would be voted on in the house by January 15th.