This past week, I visited with many of you who have suffered significant damage from Harvey. Your strength and willingness to help your neighbors ARE a constant reminder that we will come back stronger than ever. This is Texas, and it's simply how we do things.
The support that our community has received in this time of disaster is overwhelming. While we've begun recovering from the storm, the process is far from over. Congress has already passed legislation providing $15.25 billion in recovery aid, with $7 billion set aside specifically for Texas. I am working with my colleagues in the house on the next round of funding, and I'm also working to include language to prioritize buyouts of the homes that have suffered multiple flooding events.
I visited with Mary and Sparky Nolan of Foster Mills neighborhood in Kingwood and spoke to them about their recovery and what the community needed to rebuild. Larry and Lana came all the way from Louisiana to muck and clean homes for the Southern Baptist Convention.
Unfortunately, we can’t stop time from turning, and it’s important to keep Texas on the front of the Appropriations Committee’s mind. This is why Speaker Paul Ryan and members of the Appropriations Committee joined our Senators, the Houston Delegation, and myself to see the damage first hand and talk about what Texas needs to rebuild and prevent future damage of this magnitude. We met at Ellington Airforce Base for an operational briefing from FEMA, Texas National Guard, Customs and Border Patrol, the Coast Guard, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the Harris County Flood Control District.
Flying over areas of Houston devastated by Hurricane Harvey
With my colleagues in Congress in town, we also joined Team Rubicon to lend a helping hand. Team Rubicon is a disaster relief organization founded by military veterans that has helped muck out so many homes in our communities. It's organizations like this that are helping put Texas back on its feet.
Volunteering with Team Rubicon to help move debris from homeowner’s property.
The Bear Creek area was hit especially hard during the Tax Day flooding and once again by Hurricane Harvey. Last night, I hosted a Bear Creek Community Forum to address concerns of the area and allow constituents to have questions answered by relief and assistance agencies. I understand everyone’s frustration and my office will do everything we can to help get answers. Over 400 questions were asked last night. For those that were not answered, my office is working to compile the questions and will email the community with responses soon.
Standing room only at Bear Creek Community Forum. I brought together representatives from FEMA, SBA, Harris County Flood Control, Harris County Debris Removal, and the Army Corps of Engineers to answer the community’s questions regarding hurricane recovery.
As session resumes, I will continue to do everything I can to help Texas receive the funding we need to continue rebuilding our neighborhoods and come back stronger than ever. As we continue to help meet our short term needs, I am also looking at the long term- what is needed to address our continual flooding problems, and to make sure processes are transparent and agencies are accountable.
As always, if you have questions or need help with a federal agency please do not hesitate to contact my office at 281-446-0242 and we will do everything we can to assist.
GOD and TEXAS,
Member of Congress