Schumer, Velázquez lead Democratic lawmakers in seeking answers on how FEMA is preparing to respond to storms that hit Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands
Led by United States Senate Democratic Leader Charles E. Schumer (D) of New York and Representative Nydia M. Velázquez (D) of New York, 39 Members of Congress wrote the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) ahead of the upcoming hurricane season in the Caribbean, seeking answers to how FEMA is preparing to respond to a storm that hits Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands amidst the numerous other ongoing disasters and recovery efforts.
The lawmakers wrote in the letter: “While we deeply hope that Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are left untouched this hurricane season, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced on May 21 that there is a 60 percent chance the 2020 hurricane season is above average. FEMA must be prepared for the worst. Not only are the islands still rebuilding from the devastating 2017 hurricane season, when Hurricanes Irma and Maria ravaged the islands’ people, electrical grid, and infrastructure, Puerto Rico has also been hit by thousands of earthquakes and aftershocks – the most devastating of which was a 6.4-magnitude quake.”
In addition to Schumer and Velázquez, the letter is signed by Senators Ed Markey (D) of Massachussets, Kamala Harris (D) of California, Bob Casey Jr. (D) of Pennsylvania, Kirsten Gillibrand (D) of New York, Chris Van Hollen (D) of Maryland, Richard Blumenthal (D) of Connecticut, Bob Menendez (D) of New Jersey, Tim Kaine (D) of Virginia, Elizabeth Warren (D) of Massachussets, Ron Wyden (D) of Oregon, Bernie Sanders (I) of Vermont, Catherine Cortez Masto (D) of Nevada, Patty Murray (D) of Washington, Jacky Rosen (D) of Nevada, Delegate Stacey Plaskett (D) of the US Virgin Islands, and Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D) of New York, Jesus G. “Chuy” Garcia (D) of Illinois, Darren Soto (D) of Florida, Jose Serrano (D) of New York, Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D) of the District of Columbia, Albio Sires (D) of New Jersey, Jared Huffman (D) of California, Karen Bass (D) of California, Yvette Clarke (D) of New York, Gwen Moore (D) of Wisconsin, Adriano Espaillat (D) of New York, Kathy Castor (D) of Florida, Joaquin Castro (D) of Texas, Alcee L. Hastings (D) of Florida, Thomas R. Suozzi (D) of New York, Gregory Meeks (D) of New York, Grace Meng (D) of New York, Raul Grijalva (D) of Arizona, Norma Torres (D) of California, James P. McGovern (D) of Massachussets, Hakeem Jeffries (D) of New York, and Harley Rouda (D) of California.