Sen. Nelson Meets with Puerto Rican Leaders About Disaster Relief

NBC 6 Marissa Bagg reports..

(Published Friday, Oct. 6, 2017)

Senator Bill Nelson is in South Florida, where he is holding meetings with Puerto Rican leaders to talk about recovery efforts on the island.

Senator Nelson spent the afternoon hearing from about a dozen or so local Puerto Rican leaders in Miami-Dade to get their pulse on the needs of the island when it comes to continued disaster response.

Many of the locals shared their frustrations with getting help to their families all over the island.

Senator Nelson shared the latest numbers from FEMA about the agencies progress, reporting about 13 percent of people in Puerto Rico have electricity. About two-thirds of gas stations have fuel and only half of the people on the island have generators.

The biggest concern coming out of the meeting is that remote parts of the island remain cutoff and are not yet receiving relief supplies.

“There are parts of the mountains FEMA hasn’t reached yet, there are people who live up there,” said Sen. Nelson, “The congress is going to have to swallow their pride that they don’t like to appropriate funds for disasters.”

Sen. Nelson went on to say congress is going to have to help Puerto Rico get its finances right side up because it has no income since people can’t get to work, adding the economy can’t function.