In the News

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Two members of the Florida delegation–Republican U.S. Rep. Neal Dunn and Democrat U.S. Rep. Darren Soto–scored a win this week as their “FEMA Loan Interest Payment Relief Act” was included in the “Resilient Assistance for Mitigation for Environmentally Resilient Infrastructure and Construction by Americans (AMERICA) Act.

At the end of 202 Dunn introduced the “FEMA Loan Interest Payment Relief Act” which will “reimburse local governments and electric cooperatives for interest incurred on loans used to restore essential functions after natural disasters since the “interest paid on emergency loans is often a cost passed on to taxpayers and ratepayers alike.”

Dunn pointed to Hurricane Michael, which hit the Panhandle and Big Bend two years ago, as one of the reasons why he introduced the bill, noting the two-electric co-ops in the region suffered “nearly 100 percent destruction” and FEMA funds helped them restore services.

“In Florida’s Second Congressional District, our local governments and electric cooperatives have waited years for full reimbursement of Hurricane Michael related costs from FEMA. Local governments and electric co-ops take out loans to restore services; however, while they are waiting for the funding, they incur interest. These interest payments are costing them millions of dollars. We can’t have them on the hook for that,” said Dunn. “I also believe that this will incentivize the federal government to obligate these funds in a timelier manner moving forward.”