Congress Passes $50.5B Superstorm Sandy Aid Bill

NEW YORK, NY – JANUARY 02: A woman walks by homes and businesses destroyed by Superstorm Sandy in the Rockaways on January 2, 2013 in the Queens borough of New York City. Credit: Getty Images

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress is sending a $50.5 billion emergency relief measure for Superstorm Sandy victims to President Barack Obama for his signature.

The Senate on Monday cleared the bill, 62-36. Northeast lawmakers say the money is desperately needed to help recovery efforts from the one of the region’s worst storms. The House passed the bill two weeks ago.

The measure is aimed primarily at helping residents and businesses as well as state and local governments rebuild from the Oct. 29 storm. It passed despite opposition from fiscal conservatives worried about adding to deficits.

Sandy roared up the East Coast and has been blamed for more than 130 deaths and billions of dollars in residential and business property damage.