Today I have signed into law H.J. Res. 423, a continuing resolution that continues to fund most Federal Government activities through November 15, 1989, and provides $2.85 billion in disaster relief funding.
The $2.85 billion in additional disaster relief funding included in the resolution would be used primarily to help the State of California recover from the severe earthquake that struck last week. The additional funds would also be used to provide further assistance to victims of Hurricane Hugo and other Presidentially declared disasters.
Of the $2.85 billion provided, $1.1 billion would finance the disaster relief activities of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The Federal Highway Administration would receive $1 billion to assist in the repair of Federal and State roadways. The Small Business Administration would receive an additional $500 million for disaster loans, and its authority for making such loans would be increased to $1.8 billion. The remaining $250 million is made available in an unanticipated needs account to address, as needed, the consequences of these recent natural disasters, such as repairing damage to Federal facilities.
The resolution also extends the authority of the current continuing resolution through November 15, 1989. I have concurred with this action for a number of reasons. I recognize that the Congress needs additional time to address satisfactorily my veto of the FY 1990 Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act and my upcoming veto of the FY 1990 District of Columbia Appropriations Act. Moreover, with only two of the 13 regular appropriations bills enacted into law, I have decided not to force the shutdown of important Federal Government operations as a consequence of congressional inaction. Since this resolution maintains the status quo for only an additional 21 days and since most of the remaining FY 1990 appropriations bills will have completed conference action this week, I have decided to support this extension.
Given the current status of congressional action, I believe it is reasonable to expect that the Congress should complete final action on the remaining FY 1990 appropriations bills before the expiration of the resolution.
The White House,
October 26, 1989.