Senate passes bill Tuesday securing funding for the 9/11 Compensation Fund
The last legislative barrier for the continuation of funding for the 9/11 compensation fund was cleared Tuesday following a bipartisan senate vote to extend funding for victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks. The bill, which passed the Senate on a vote of 97-2, aims to cover past and future claims made by 9/11 victims through the year 2090, and is expected to be signed by President Trump later this week. ~
According to the Wall Street Journal, the compensation fund was created to “compensate victims of the terrorist attacks, relatives of those killed and volunteers and first responders who suffered health consequences as a result of working near the sites.” Although the fund was halted in 2004, the Obama administration helped resume the fund in 2008 and set a deadline of December 2020 to file claims. In February, however, the compensation fund announced that it had an insufficient amount of money to pay in full all past and future claims. A series of speakers – including comedian Jon Stewart, first responders, survivors, and more – urged the house to refinance the fund, which they did two weeks later. ~
Some, mostly a small portion of Republicans, believe that there is too much funding going to the 9/11 compensation fund despite their support for the fund itself. The two lawmakers that voted against the Senate bill – Senators Mike Lee (R., UT) and Rand Paul (R., KY) – offered amendments to the bill that lowered the funding, but did not succeed. The 9/11 Compensation Fund said it has “already paid out $5 billion in awards to more than 22,000 claimants, with another 17,000 claims pending and an unknown number of future claims that have yet to be filed.” The Congressional Budget Office estimates the first decade of the extended funding to cost the government around $10.2 billion. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D., NY) stated the importance of the fund Tuesday, stating the government compensation was “for every person who spent days, weeks and months on the pile, and has had to suffer physical and mental scars for years because of that heroic work.” ~
This is Fact Based America – WE have the FACTS. YOU have the OPINIONS. Do you support the 9/11 Compensation Fund as it was passed in the Senate? Or do you believe that the funding for the fund should be reigned in?