N.M. Congressional Democrats Announce Additional $1.45 Billion for New Mexicans Impacted by Hermit’s Peak/Calf Canyon Fire
Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) and U.S. Representatives Teresa Leger Fernández (D-N.M.) and Melanie Stansbury (D-N.M.) announced an additional $1.45 billion to fund the Hermit’s Peak/Calf Canyon Fire Claims Office. The funding is included as part of the disaster supplemental section in the appropriations bill that will be voted on this week.
In total, this additional funding will provide $3.95 billion for FEMA to better meet the expected costs to fund the Hermit’s Peak/Calf Canyon Fire Assistance Act. The appropriations bill also includes language to allow for the repairs and replacement of the water treatment facility in Las Vegas, New Mexico to ensure the community has access to clean drinking water.
Earlier this year, New Mexico’s Congressional Democrats successfully passed the Hermit’s Peak/Calf Canyon Fire Assistance Act to deliver $2.5 billion for New Mexico families and businesses impacted by wildfire. The Hermit’s Peak/Calf Canyon Fire Assistance Act is led by Senator Luján and Representative Leger Fernández, and co-sponsored by Senator Heinrich and Representative Stansbury.
“The Hermit’s Peak-Calf Canyon Fire destroyed hundreds of homes and businesses, and it displaced thousands of New Mexicans for weeks and months on end. Their incredible resilience and willingness to serve their neighbors in such a difficult time embodies the best of what it means to be New Mexican. That’s why we fought so hard to secure additional funding for New Mexicans to rebuild in the aftermath of the worst fire in our state’s history,” said Heinrich. “I remain committed to restoring the health of our forests and watersheds and making sure that New Mexico families and communities are made whole again.”
“As New Mexico families and businesses continue to recover from the largest wildfire in state history and the flooding in the aftermath, I’m proud to announce additional funding to recover and rebuild in northern New Mexico. The lives of New Mexicans were completely upended by a wildfire started by the federal government, and we must do everything possible to make families whole again,” said Luján. “Once passed and signed into law, this funding will help New Mexicans to recover from wildfires and flooding and provide vital support to repair and replace the Las Vegas water treatment facility. I look forward to working with my colleagues to get this appropriations bill across the finish line and provide the full relief and support that New Mexicans deserve.”
“Today, after long negotiations, we can announce an additional $1.45 billion to compensate New Mexicans who lost so much during the Hermit’s Peak/Calf Canyon Fire, bringing the total funding for Hermit’s Peak/Calf Canyon to $3.95 billion. We knew that our communities needed more than the earlier $2.5 billion to recover from the devastating wildfires and floods that have ravaged our beautiful communities, forests, and acequias. It will also pay to replace the damaged Las Vegas water treatment facility and make sure residents of my hometown have access to clean water,” said Leger Fernández. “This additional funding is what justice looks like – the federal government is taking responsibility for the harm it caused and answering the stories, voices, and calls for help to rebuild. My promise has always been to pursue every possible opportunity to seek justice, and we successfully passed the Hermit’s Peak/Calf Canyon Fire Assistance Act which included the initial $2.5 billion dollars for New Mexicans and now, this additional funding in the omnibus. I thank my colleagues for our team effort to deliver for Nuevo Mexicanos and look forward to passing it into law later this week.”
“As New Mexicans continue to rebuild from this year’s devastating fires, we are grateful for the President and our colleagues’ partnership in securing an additional $1.45 billion in the Omnibus to support families impacted by the Hermits Peak/Calf Canyon fire,” said Stansbury. “We know that nothing can replace what has been lost in these fires, but are grateful our federal agencies are stepping up and that this funding will help our resilient communities and families to rebuild.”