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Tri-State Area Reps: Sequestration Will Jeopardize Sandy Relief

The US Capitol (credit: JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)

The US Capitol (credit: JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Members of Congress from the Tri-State Area continued their warning this week that the federal sequester will pull money out of the Superstorm Sandy relief effort.

As WCBS 880’s Jim Smith reported, first it was the storm itself, followed by a three-month wait for Congress to act. Now, U.S. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) said Sandy victims could be hit again with automatic budget cuts.

“In excess of $2.5 billion will be cut from the amount of funding that would otherwise have been available for communities that have been hard hit,” Jeffries said.

He said the concern is that the Federal Emergency Management Agency will not have the funding it needs to help storm victims move forward.

“Sequestration has resulted in the victims of Superstorm Sandy again being treated disrespectfully,” Jeffries said.

Jeffries called the anticipated cuts unacceptable, and said he is now hoping for a speedy, bipartisan solution.

President Barack Obama signed the sequester order a week ago Friday, after Democrats and Republicans in Congress failed to come up with cost-saving measures to ward off the automatic cuts.

The Democrats sought a plan combining spending cuts and tax hikes for the wealthiest Americans, while Republicans refused to raise taxes on any group.