House Speaker Paul Ryan and a bipartisan group of lawmakers will visit Houston on Thursday for an update on Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts, one of several regions in the United States and surrounding territories that have been devastated by a series of high power storms.
The trip to Texas comes a day after Ryan visited to Florida, which is in its own recovery mode after Hurricane Irma struck the region just days after Harvey. The trip also comes a day after Hurricane Maria slammed into Puerto Rico, cutting off electricity to the entire island.
Texas Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz will join Ryan, House Appropriations Committee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen, a New Jersey Republican, and nine representatives from the Texas congressional delegation including Democratic Reps. Sheila Jackson-Lee and Gene Green. The visit comes nearly two weeks after President Donald Trump signed a measure allocating emergency hurricane relief funding in response to both Harvey and Irma.
The lawmakers will receive a briefing at Coast Guard Air Station Houston and an aerial tour, and then meet with volunteers in nearby Friendswood.
On Wednesday, Ryan toured Jacksonville and parts of southern Florida that were hit by Irma, with Sen. Marco Rubio and Rep. Carlos Curbelo, both Republicans.
Earlier this month Congress approved and President Donald Trump signed into law a package of bills that would send $22 billion for FEMA’s disaster relief fund, in a deal that also lifted the debt ceiling and kept the federal government funded through September. Ninety representatives and 17 senators, all Republicans, opposed the legislation, some citing the fact that the legislation was part of a deal struck by Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. Republican leaders had sought a debt limit increase for as long as 18 months.
Trump, who pledged to donate $1 million of his own money toward Harvey relief, visited the flood-ravaged Houston area twice last month and Florida last week.