Ryan ‘confident’ Congress will pass Flint aid

Ryan ‘confident’ Congress will pass Flint aid
© Greg Nash

Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanAppeals court rules House chaplain can reject secular prayers FEC filing: No individuals donated to indicted GOP rep this cycle The Hill's Morning Report - Waiting on Mueller: Answers come on Thursday MORE (R-Wis.) said he is “confident” Congress will pass an aid bill for the Flint, Mich., water crisis this year. 

Speaking at a campaign event in Traverse City, Mich., said Congress will find a way to approve a drinking water infrastructure overhaul package after November's elections. 

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The Senate has approved a $220 million package for Flint and other cities with threatened drinking water supplies as part of a water infrastructure improvement package. The House last week approved its version of the bill, which includes $170 million for drinking water upgrades.  

“That bill is making its way through,” Ryan said, the Detroit News reports. “It will get done in December or November, and I’m confident Flint will be addressed there.”

Congress has long fought over how to approve an aid package for Flint, which is suffering through a lead poisoning problem brought on by corroded drinking water infrastructure. 

The Senate’s aid package easily passed this fall as part of the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA). The funding wasn’t included in the House version of that bill, though Ryan and others had insisted they would add it to a final compromise bill between the two chambers.

Republican leadership resisted adding Flint aid to a short-term spending package in September, a decision that prompted Senate Democrats to vote down an early version of that bill last week. 

Michigan members eventually worked with Ryan and other Republicans to add Flint aid to the House’s WRDA, essentially ensuring it will be included in a final water package this year.    

“The point is, the House passed the bill, and the Senate passed a bill,” Ryan said Monday. “They’re very similar, and that is the right way to address a very legitimate problem, which is Flint.”