With an outbreak of the Zika virus in Florida, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says the Obama administration is pressing Congress to devote more funding toward fighting that mosquito-borne illness.
Grassley says he’s written to two federal agencies, seeking answers about why they have been so slow to distribute $589 million already allocated to fight Zika.
“How are they spending it and are they spending it?” Grassley asks. “While the administration is raising cain with Congress for not appropriating the amount of money they think they ought to have, which we are, I want to know what’s happening with the money they’ve already got.”
Grassley says the money was available as early as April 6th but the money was still largely unspent at the time of his letter on July 8th. His criticism was directed at the head of the Centers for Disease Control and the office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response.
With some 15 Zika cases in Florida, federal officials on Monday issued an unprecedented warning, telling pregnant women and their sexual partners to avoid an area near Miami.