Congressman Charlie Crist (D-FL) released the following statement on the Biden Administration's decision to release $1.3 billion in aid to Puerto Rico to help protect against future climate disasters, as well as easing restrictions manufactured by the Trump administration on $4.9 billion in aid approved by Congress to help the island rebuild in the wake of Hurricanes Maria and Irma.
"I applaud the Biden Administration's decision to release these long overdue funds to the people of Puerto Rico. The Trump Administration's decision to withhold aid passed by Congress after Hurricane Maria has cost the American citizens of Puerto Rico valuable time in their struggle to rebuild, and has left Puerto Rican communities even more vulnerable to the impacts of recent natural disasters like Hurricane Irma, or the devastating earthquakes that shook the island last year.
"From my neighbors in the Puerto Rican community in Florida to their families and friends back on the island, the past four years have been a challenging, often heartbreaking struggle to rebuild the homes, businesses, and communities they cherish, with little federal assistance or resources. They have felt ignored and abandoned by their country, despite the fact that they are Americans. This move from President Biden is an important step, not just to rebuild Puerto Rico's infrastructure, but to rebuild the trust between the federal government and the millions of Boricuas that call the Island of Enchantment home."