Gov. Scott Meets with Fla. Congressional Delegation
WASHINGTON – Florida Gov. Rick Scott and the bipartisan congressional delegation met today and discussed the need to maximize federal resources to help the state recover in the wake of Hurricane Irma. The meeting hosted by Reps. Vern Buchanan and Alcee Hastings, co-chairs of the 29-member delegation, focused on Florida's citrus industry which accounted for more than $760 million in agricultural losses.
“We need federal assistance to help our citrus industry,” Gov. Scott said. “They've lost pretty much their whole crop.”
Buchanan highlighted legislation he introduced in the U.S. House to help citrus growers rebuild by making it less costly for farmers to replace damaged trees. The measure (H.R. 112), which is co-sponsored by every member of the Florida congressional delegation in both the House and Senate, is expected to be considered on the House floor later this month.
“Hurricane Irma upended communities and devastated the livelihoods of so many across our great state,” Buchanan said. “We cannot act quickly enough to provide the relief they need to rebuild and recover.”
The meeting included 23 members of the 27-member Florida House delegation and was also attended by Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam.
The U.S. House will consider a disaster aid bill later this week which provides $36.5 billion in emergency funding for hurricane relief efforts. The measure includes $16 billion to replenish the nation's flood insurance program.
List of attendees: U.S. Reps. Hastings, Curbelo, Demings, Francis Rooney, Tom Rooney, Crist, Gaetz, Wilson, Lawson, Ross, Wasserman-Schultz, Dunn, Yoho, Posey, Frankel, Murphy, Mast, Diaz-Balart, Rutherford, Ros-Lehtinen, Bilirakis and Soto.