The U.S. Senate has passed an emergency spending bill that would provide about $150 million in aid to Rhode Island and other states hit by severe floods this year.
The Senate approved the $58.8 billion emergency war funding and disaster relief bill on Thursday. It must still pass the U.S. House of Representatives.
The spring flooding in Rhode Island prompted President Barack Obama to declare the state a disaster area. Communities declared as disaster areas are required to match 25 percent of federal aid to qualify for it. But the bill reduces the match to 10 percent, which would save the state millions.
Sen. Jack Reed says the money represents a “down payment” to help Rhode Island recover.