U.S. Senate approves $2 billion for hurricane relief fund

WASHINGTON — The Latest on Hurricane Harvey (all times local):6:15 p.m.

The Senate voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to approve a $2.5 billion relief package for the victims of Hurricane Harvey.

The package, which was passed on a 52-47 vote, includes $1.8 billion for the U.N. World Food Program, $1 billion for victims of the storm, $400 million for storm water mitigation, $30 million for emergency housing and $40 million for water and sanitation.

The Senate also approved $1 million for a U.K.-based relief fund that will be distributed to victims in the U-K.

It is the second such package for Harvey relief that passed Wednesday and comes as the U, U.W. and U.C.L.A. urged President Donald Trump to make good on a pledge to help flood victims.

The House of Representatives passed a $1 trillion package Wednesday night that includes $500 million in emergency relief for U.s. cities and states.

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., who helped draft the Senate bill, said the House version would be better for the American people than the Senate version.

He said the Senate would get a lot more money and will be more supportive of the victims.

Alexander, who is chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, said in a statement that the Senate has a record of being more responsive to our American victims than the House.

He urged the House to approve the Senate package and send it to the President for signature.

He said it is critical for our American people to receive the $2 trillion package of relief needed to protect their most vulnerable and to protect our coastlines.

The bill also includes $400 billion for stormwater mitigation, a $30 billion disaster assistance package, $10 million for flood insurance and $25 million for disaster relocation and reconstruction assistance.