Nearly $33 million in disaster relief money will soon flow to help New England fishermen hurting from declining fish stocks and tighter fishing limits. The federal government declared a fisheries disaster last year in Rhode Island. Sens. Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse, and Reps. Jim Langevin and David Cicilline joined other congressional leaders to include $74 million in fisheries disaster in the fiscal year 2014 appropriations bill.
The U.S. Senate had its Secret Santa gift exchange, and one of Rhode Island’s senators bowed out of the fun. For the last three years Minnesota Sen. Al Franken has arranged the bipartisan Secret Santa. But Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse said he loves to torment his friend, Sen. Franken, by refusing to take part in the affair.
Whitehouse said Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid also passes up the chance to swap a cheap gift with a fellow U.S. Senator.