By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter
Alabama state Sen. Gerald Dial, R-Lineville, is heading up an effort to raise about $3,500 with other senators to send aid to the victims of Hurricane Harvey.
“I know many of us have already contributed money to relief efforts for Hurricane Harvey and now Irma, but I believe a bi-partisan effort from all of Alabama’s Senators would mean a lot to our neighbors in Texas,” Dial said.
Dial is asking each of Alabama’s 35 state senators to contribute $100 a piece, if not more, to a Harvey Relief Fund, which would be managed by Alabama Senate Secretary Pat Harris.
“Once we collect $3,500 from the members of the Alabama Senate, I will then ask our colleagues at the Texas State Senate to distribute the funds by sending $500 to families in seven Texas Senate districts impacted by Hurricane Harvey,” Dial said.
Even with floodwaters now receding in Texas weeks after the storm made landfall in late August, a long road to recovery remains for the people in the Lone Star State.
Damage estimates have ranged from $65 billion to $190 billion, making the storm the most destructive and costly in U.S. history. The highest estimate would make Harvey the most expensive on record — more than $30 billion more costly than the $160 billion Hurricane Katrina and more than twice that of the $70 million Hurricane Sandy.
More than 185,000 homes were likely lost in Harvey’s wake. Between Harvey and Hurricane Irma, which could cost between $50 and $100 million. If proven correct, that would make this hurricane season the most expensive and destructive ever.
The National Centers for Environmental Information said that official hurricane price tags are usually too low because they don’t include damages to employment, degraded ecosystems and the everyday lives of those affected by the storm.
“Alabama’s citizens and businesses have already done tremendous work in helping our Texas neighbors recover,” Dial said. “I’m glad to play a small part in helping the folks in Texas, who are still very much in need.”