WASHINGTON, D.C. (Nexstar) — The federal government owes tens of millions of dollars to local governments and non-profits, and it’s not paying up.
Congress approved $30 million to reimburse cities, counties, churches, and others who have provided care for migrants taken into custody on the Mexican border — but for weeks that money has been held up in Washington.
FEMA was supposed to start accepting reimbursement applications on July 31, but Texas Democratic Congressman Henry Cuellar says FEMA has put the payments on hold while it revamps its application and payment process.
Texas Republican Congressman Will Hurd says Congress needs to put pressure on FEMA, saying:
“It is now time for the oversight role to make sure that these resources to reimburse these communities that are taking on the burden of the federal government, that they are getting reimbursed and made whole.”
Cuellar says FEMA needs to get moving, the federal fiscal year ends September 30.
FEMA seems finally to be ready to open the checkbook. It has warned local communities to start preparing applications, saying in a notice: “Time is of the essence…be prepared for an accelerated application process.”