• ‘Huge victory for Floridians:' Long-delayed $19 billion disaster aid bill passes

    MIAMI (AP) - Florida officials are applauding the passage of a long-delayed $19.1 billion disaster aid bill in Congress.

    Gov. Ron DeSantis called it a "huge victory for Floridians."

    After months of political infighting, the relief funding comes in response to disasters such as Hurricane Michael, which hit the Florida Panhandle last year.

    Hurricane Michael: How the storm stacks up to other storms

    The House approved the measure after disputes over whether Puerto Rico should receive additional aid. President Donald Trump also wanted some funding in response to thousands of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border.

    The bill was backed by all 222 voting Democrats and 132 Republicans. Florida and Georgia lawmakers had requested help for farmers, towns and military bases ravaged by hurricanes last fall.

    Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried called the disaster relief "long overdue," as this year's hurricane season has started.


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