PERTH AMBOY, NJ –  This week marks the one year anniversary of Hurricane Maria, which serves as a reminder of the crisis Puerto Rico continues to face as it seeks to rebuild after last year's natural disaster. Puerto Rico's resiliency is unquestioned and New Jersey's leaders will continue to support our fellow Americans on the Island. As we continue to advocate for Puerto Rico it is important to note that Senator Bob Menendez will continue to fight for the Puerto Rican community.

In the face of the Trump administration's lack of compassion and work on behalf of the Island, Puerto Ricans know they can continue to rely on Senator Bob Menendez. After Hurricane Maria, Senator Menendez was one of the first federal officials to visit the Island and meet with Puerto Ricans regarding the devastating damage inflicted upon the towns and neighborhoods that make up the Island. Senator Menendez’s trip was incredibly important as President Trump sought to block federal lawmakers from visiting Puerto Rico. During his visit, Senator Menendez was able to shed light on the breadth of the damage and his comprehensive understanding of the crisis ultimately led to Congress providing over $17 billion in federal aid. That assistance has gone a long way towards helping Puerto Ricans get critical infrastructure up and running again.

The Senator’s leadership on the issue is not surprising with his experience in dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. His leadership was critical in ensuring that New Jersey families received the help they needed following Hurricane Sandy. Moreover, Senator Menendez has supported my efforts to provide Puerto Rico evacuees in the State of New Jersey with critical assistance in housing, employment and other basic necessities. Whether in Puerto Rico or in the State of New Jersey, Senator Menendez’s compassion for the Puerto Rican people is front and center.

It is also important to note that Senator Menendez has been a critical voice for the Puerto Rican community for his entire career. As Puerto Rico continues to deal with Wall Street bankers causing enormous financial pain on the Island, Senator Menendez has continued to advocate for transparency and accountability with respect to the Island's budget decisions. I know the Senator will continue to ensure Puerto Ricans have a responsive and effective government representing their interests.