December 28, 2012
Dear Member of Congress:
As you come back to Washington, D.C. to act on the remaining business of 2012, we request your help in finalizing the federal aid package for the states that were devastated by Hurricane Sandy. President Obama has put forward a comprehensive package that has passed the Senate and, if passed by the House, will provide the critical support hundreds of thousands of small businesses and homeowners in our regions have been waiting for since the storm hit nearly two months ago.
Whenever a crisis or natural disaster has hit any part of the nation, elected representatives from affected regions have always been the most vocal and forceful, urging their colleagues to do their duty and vote to deliver much needed federal support. The congressional delegations of our three states have always been there to provide critical votes for these aid packages, because this is what America is all about - when one of us is in need, we step up to the plate to lend a helping hand.
Every time there has been a storm or disaster even close to the size and scope of Sandy, regardless of the region of the country, the House has approved billions of dollars in supplemental aid -- $290 billion in total since 1989 as part of 35 separate supplemental appropriations bills.
We request the same expedited assistance now. Any delay in passing this aid would be unprecedented in recent history and would signal a shift in federal policy toward disaster assistance.
So the question to each and every member of the House is: If this storm had struck your constituency and devastated it the way Sandy has ours, would you say that the House has done enough? If tens of thousands of your constituent's homes and business were destroyed, would you stay silent? Would you let months pass without the House taking any action to help?
The Senate has passed this aid package in a bipartisan manner and there is no reason the House shouldn't do the same. With the House reconvening this weekend to help the nation avoid the "fiscal cliff," remember that disasters affect every region of this nation and that we as a nation stand together in times of crisis.
We urge your support for this aid.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
Governor Chris Christie
Governor Dannel P. Malloy