From his seat on the U.S. House Appropriations Committee, U.S. Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla., announced that the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) is sending Miami Springs almost $2 million as part of its Public Assistance (PA) program.

Diaz-Balart made the announcement on Wednesday afternoon, saying that FEMA is sending $1.93 million to Miami Springs as part of FEMA’s PA program. Those funds represent 90 percent of the $2.15 million used to clean up debris in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma a year ago.

The South Florida Republican, who leads the U.S. House Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD) Appropriations Subcommittee, weighed in on the funds headed to Miami Springs.

“I am pleased Miami Springs was awarded this money to help with the cost-share of clean up after Hurricane Irma,” Diaz-Balart said. “Irma left behind a trail of debris across the Sunshine State, leaving many localities to bear the expense of getting their roads back to a safe, operational condition.

“From my meetings with local elected officials throughout the 25th District over the last year, we all agreed that FEMA is taking too long to provide these reimbursements. I am glad to see that FEMA is starting to roll out these payments, and I will continue to pressure the agency to finish reimbursing all affected communities in Southern Florida,” he added.

While the district has been solidly Republican in recent elections, Democrats are targeting Diaz-Balart though he is not at the top of their list of incumbents to pick off in November. Former Circuit Judge Mary Barzee Flores is the Democratic candidate challenging Diaz-Balart.

First elected to Congress in 2002, Diaz-Balart currently represents parts of Collier, Hendry and Miami-Dade with his district covering much of the Everglades.


Kevin Derby can be reached at

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