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FEMA Chief: Sandy Fund Should Last until Spring

By ANDREW MIGA, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency says there’s enough money in the government’s disaster relief fund for Superstorm Sandy recovery efforts until early spring.

FEMA Director Craig Fugate told the House Transportation Committee on Tuesday that the fund still has about $4.8 billion that it can disperse. So far, the government has distributed about $2 billion in aid to the 11 states struck by the late October storm.

Fugate’s testimony somewhat undercuts appeals by New York, New Jersey and Connecticut for more aid immediately. Those three states alone want another $83 billion. President Obama can request up to another $5.4 billion without hitting a spending ceiling. Several Republicans say more than that should be matched by spending cuts in other federal programs.