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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez
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News Release

ETA News Release: [11/23/2010]
Contact Name: Lina Garcia or Michael Trupo
Phone Number: (202) 693-6133 or x3414
Release Number: 10-1362-NEW

US Department of Labor provides $4 million to assist severe storm recovery efforts in Puerto Rico

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor has announced a $4 million National Emergency Grant award to assist cleanup and recovery efforts in the wake of Tropical Storm Otto that struck Puerto Rico in October.

These funds will be awarded to the Puerto Rico Department of Labor and Human Resources. Funds will be used to create temporary jobs to assist in the recovery from the severe storm's devastation, which included flooding and landslides.

"The people of Puerto Rico deserve our support as they repair damage inflicted by Tropical Storm Otto on communities across the island," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "Puerto Ricans also deserve every opportunity to work and earn a living. I am pleased that this grant will support the creation of jobs while fostering recovery in local communities and the economy as a whole."

On Oct. 26, the Federal Emergency Management Agency declared 21 municipalities in the commonwealth of Puerto Rico eligible for FEMA's Public Assistance Program: Adjuntas, Aibonito, Añasco, Guánica, Guayama, Jayuya, Lares, Las Marías, Maricao, Mayagüez, Morovis, Orocovis, Patillas, Ponce, Sabana Grande, Salinas, San Germán, Utuado, Villalba, Yabucoa and Yauco.

Of the $4 million announced today, $1 million will be released initially. Additional funding up to the amount approved will be made available as Puerto Rico demonstrates a continued need for assistance.

National Emergency Grants are awarded at the discretion of the secretary of labor based on a state's ability to meet specific guidelines. For more information, visit http://www.doleta.gov/NEG/.