Last week, U.S. Senators Sam Brownback and Pat Roberts announced major progress in procuring $40 million in disaster relief funding for recovery from the Greensburg tornado and other violent storms that hit Kansas in early May. The funding will be administered through the Department of Agriculture and will be available to Greensburg, Kiowa County and other Kansas counties designated by the president as federal disaster areas.
"I am pleased that the Kansas delegation worked hard to get this disaster relief funding to the storm victims who need it," Brownback said in a statement. "I urge the House to act quickly so that President Bush can sign this bill and we can support the storm victims and relief efforts already underway."
"This funding represents a significant federal commitment to help Greensburg get back on its feet after the devastating tornado on May 4," Roberts added. "I am pleased we have been able to quickly secure these funds and let the citizens of Greensburg know that the federal government stands behind their efforts to rebuild their community. This has truly been a team effort by all members of the Kansas delegation."
The efforts of Representatives Jerry Moran (KS-1), Todd Tiahrt (KS-4), Dennis Moore (KS-3) and Nancy Boyda (KS-2) played a major role in procuring the funding and paving the way for quick action.
The $40 million will supplement funds already available through the Federal Emergency Management Agency. This relief funding is not limited to Greenburg and will be available to other parts of the state affected by the storms.
While the legislative language gives the Secretary of Agriculture broad authority to administer these funds, Senators Brownback and Roberts intend that the majority of relief funding should go toward rebuilding homes, businesses and community and government facilities.
The disaster relief funding is attached to the Iraq Supplemental Appropriations bill that was filed in the House late last night. Pending passage in the House, the bill faces likely passage in the Senate. The White House has indicated that the president will sign the bill provided that it reaches his desk in its present form.
Senator Brownback is a member of the Appropriations Committee and Senator Roberts is a member of the Agriculture Committee.