By Paula Katinas
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
While everyone in Washington D.C. was consumed with the Fiscal Cliff on the last day of 2012, U.S. Rep. Michael Grimm (R-Brooklyn-Staten Island) was seeking to remind his fellow lawmakers that there are thousands of New Yorkers still suffering from the effects of Hurricane Sandy.
Grimm was busy pushing for House passage of a $60.4 billion aid bill for the states devastated by the Oct. 29 super-storm. The Huffington Post reported that the Senate approved the aid package by a vote of 61-33 on Dec. 28.
“I applaud the Senate for passage of the Superstorm Sandy Supplemental Bill, and its bipartisan effort to bring aid to those devastated by the storm. Now the fate of this much-needed emergency aid package lies in the hands of the House members, and our time to act is now,” Grimm said.
Grimm said that like the Fiscal Cliff, the Sandy relief bill also face a midnight deadline on Dec. 31. He dreaded the idea of having action on the bill postponed until after a new congress is sworn into office after Jan. 1.
“The need for emergency disaster relief is beyond urgent. To start from scratch in the next congress will seriously jeopardize New York’s ability to rebuild, which is why we simply cannot afford to sit back and allow the clock to run out,” Grimm said on his website.
“I am confident that if a vote is called, my colleagues in the House will do the right thing and provide the necessary votes to pass this bill, so that those in the most devastated areas will have the resources needed to effectively rebuild,” the congressman said.
Several neighborhoods in the Staten Island end of Grimm’s district sustained immense damage from the hurricane, with many residents left homeless by the storm.