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Rubio, Nelson, Colleagues Introduce Resolution Recognizing One Year Since Hurricane Maria

Sep 18, 2018 | Press Releases

Washington, D.C.—U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL), Bill Nelson (D-FL), and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) were joined by several of their colleagues in introducing a resolution today to recognize one year since Hurricane Maria’s landfall in Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands and reaffirm the Senate’s commitment to support the people of Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands as they continue to rebuild and recover from the devastation of the storm.

The text of the resolution is below.

Marking 1 year since the landfall of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands.

Whereas, on September 20, 2017, Hurricane Maria passed through the United States Virgin Islands as a category 5 hurricane and made landfall in Puerto Rico as a category 4 hurricane, causing significant devastation across those islands;

Whereas the people of Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands have shown an incredible and resilient spirit in rebuilding after their record losses;

Whereas Hurricane Maria contributed to an estimated 2,975 deaths in Puerto Rico;

Whereas the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration estimates that Hurricane Maria caused an estimated $90,000,000,000 in damage to Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands, making Hurricane Maria the third-costliest hurricane in United States history;

Whereas, as a result of Hurricane Maria—

(1) 3,300,000 residents of Puerto Rico were left without electrical power;

(2) 95 percent of cellular sites were knocked out;

(3) 80 percent of water service was inoperable; and

(4) thousands of Puerto Ricans were displaced from their homes and relocated to the mainland United States;

Whereas significant challenges remain in recovery and rebuilding efforts in Puerto Rico 1 year after Hurricane Maria hit;

Whereas Congress appropriated billions of dollars with the specific purpose of directly helping the citizens of Puerto Rico to rebuild their lives in the aftermath of the hurricane;

Whereas the electrical grid on the island of Puerto Rico remains unreliable and susceptible to intermittent brownouts and blackouts; and

Whereas many Puerto Ricans continue to be displaced without access to permanent housing both on the island of Puerto Rico and on the mainland: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Senate—

(1) recognizes that September 20, 2018, marks 1 year since the landfall of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico;

(2) honors the victims who lost their lives due to Hurricane Maria;

(3) commends the resiliency of those still rebuilding their lives after Hurricane Maria;

(4) recognizes the continued challenges facing Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands in the wake of Hurricane Maria;

(5) commits to ensuring that survivors of Hurricane Maria have adequate resources to continue the recovery process;

(6) extols the work of first responders and citizens who contributed to saving countless lives in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria; and

(7) reaffirms the commitment of the Senate to support the people of Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands as they continue to rebuild and recover from the devastation of Hurricane Maria.