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Garamendi Supports Bill to Protect Compensation for Wildfire Victims

Today, Congressman John Garamendi (D-CA), a senior member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, supported passage of the “Preventing Disaster Revictimization Act” (H.R.5953), which unanimously passed out of the Committee. Garamendi is a cosponsor of the bipartisan legislation. This bill would prevent the federal government from raiding a wildfire victim settlement fund that allows victims of the California wildfires and other disasters to seek reimbursement from natural disasters.

On January 17, 2020, Garamendi joined a bipartisan group of his colleagues in the California Congressional delegation to send a letter imploring U.S. Attorney General Barr and California Attorney General Becerra to immediately drop their claims to the Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) settlement fund for California wildfire victims.

“Federal and State governments have a responsibility to work for the people, not the other way around. Unlike my constituents, the State of California and the Federal Government routinely receive funding for disaster response and account for the projected costs of disasters in their respective budgets. It’s unconscionable to allow the government to reimburse these costs by raiding a settlement fund that’s intended for wildfires victims—many of whom lost everything. That’s why I joined my colleagues in supporting the ‘Preventing Disaster Revictimization Act’ to ensure that victims of California’s recently deadly wildfires receive the support and care they need to recover from an unimaginable hardship,” Garamendi said.

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