Rep. Anthony Brindisi

Last week, Brindisi stood with first responders in Rome and Endwell to call for bill’s swift passage

Last week, Congressman Anthony Brindisi (NY-22) stood with first responders in Rome and Endwell to call on Congressional leadership to make good on their promise to support 9/11 first responders and their families by allowing a vote on legislation to permanently reauthorize the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund. July 9, House leadership announced the House of Representatives scheduled a vote for Friday, July 12.

The Never Forget the Heroes: Permanent Authorization of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Act (H.R. 1327), which permanently extends the expiring 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund, has 332 cosponsors in the House, well over the 218 votes needed to pass.

“I’m encouraged House leadership has scheduled a vote on this critical legislation,” said Brindisi.“Permanently reauthorizing the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund is the right thing to do for these brave men and women who selflessly put their lives on the line. Our first responders and their families cannot wait any longer.”

The “VCF” was created to provide compensation for those who suffered physical harm or were killed as a result of the 9/11 terror attack or the debris removal efforts that took place after the crashes. The original VCF ran from 2001-2004.  In 2011, Congress passed the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010 to allow the VCF to operate for a period of five years, ending in October 2016. Congress passed a reauthorization of that bill in 2015, which included a five-year reauthorization of the VCF, allowing individuals to submit their claims until Dec. 18, 2020.

To date, the VCF has received 48,548 eligibility claims, with 23,390 claimants eligible for compensation. In February, the VCF reported “insufficient  funds” and announced cuts of 50% for pending claims and 70% for new claims.

After Friday’s vote in the House of Representatives, the bill will await action in the Senate.

By martha

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