Governor Wolf Announces More Aid to Puerto Rico, Calls for Swifter Federal Action to Help Americans
September 27, 2017
Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf today said more Pennsylvania resources are headed to Puerto Rico and that the state is ready and willing to fulfill federal aid requests. Governor Wolf called on the federal government to act with greater urgency to assist millions of residents in the American territory facing a humanitarian crisis.
“The images of Americans in Puerto Rico facing this humanitarian crisis and desperate for aid are unconscionable, and there is absolutely no good reason that the executive and legislative branches are not acting more swiftly to protect these American citizens,” Governor Wolf said.
“The President can’t wait to send Congress another disaster-spending request until mid-October. The time to act is now. Lift the Jones Act to allow foreign shipping vessels into Puerto Rico to deliver desperately needed fuel and supplies. The more than three million U.S. citizens in Puerto Rico deserve so much better.”
Pennsylvania is monitoring requests for assistance from Puerto Rico and the federal government for resources, as it did with Texas and Florida. Most recently, Pennsylvania fulfilled a request through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact for two helicopters and crews, a request filled by the Pennsylvania National Guard. In addition, several members of PA-Task Force 1 are providing incident support on the ground in Puerto Rico through the National Urban Search and Rescue system.
“While we understand the need to initially assess the situation, the time has long passed for determining how to get the most basic needs such as electricity and water to the people of Puerto Rico. For the federal government to do so little is inhumane.”