SUPPLEMENTAL APPROPRIATIONS; Congressional Record Vol. 158, No. 169
(Senate - December 28, 2012)

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  Mr. SCHUMER. Mr. President, passing this bill was a very fine 
accomplishment. Of course, we Senators get up and stand and are very 
proud of it, as we should be. But without our staffs, we could not get 
any of this done.
  So I would just like to take a few minutes to thank my staff, many of 
whom were personally impacted by Superstorm Sandy, who worked 
tirelessly to ensure that New York's needs were adequately addressed as 
my State continues to react and recover from Superstorm Sandy and her 
aftermath. Because of their hard work and tireless efforts, I know New 
York's needs have been addressed in the Sandy supplemental legislation 
that passed through the Senate earlier this evening.
  My great LD Heather McHugh coordinated this effort, making sure that 
every type of aid was considered and included in this package. She has 
great knowledge of both the Senate and the House, and it was invaluable 
in getting this done.
  My deputy chief of staff, Erin Sager Vaughan, who is so selfless and 
wonderful in making sure that every ``t'' is crossed and every ``i'' is 
dotted--I thank her as well.
  Her team: Gerry Petrella did an amazing job. He is a Long Islander. 
He felt the impact of this storm personally, and he was there every 
step of the way making sure we did not leave out anything. Megan 
Richardson, Meghan Taira, Jonah Crane, Grant Kerr, Sean Byrne, Hana 
Greenberg, Veronica Duron were all exceptional on our legislative staff 
in bringing their expertise to help New York.
  I wish to thank my press team: Brian Fallon, Max Young, Meredith 
Kelly, Lindsay Kryzak, Marissa Kaufman, Chris Scribner, who did a great 
  While this legislation is a tremendous accomplishment for my staff in 
Washington, DC, I would also like to thank members of my regional 
offices who not only lived through and experienced Sandy but made 
themselves available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to see that the 
needs of the people of New York would be recognized and addressed, who 
extended their arms to those who were in trouble.
  Martin Brennan heads my New York operation. He had a torn Achilles 
and hobbled around in a cast, but he led our staff, as he always does, 
as a team and exquisitely.
  Our casework team, they are seasoned. Suzie Orlove--whom I went to 
second grade with and has been working for me for over 30 years--Sydney 
Renwick, Joyce Chang, Julietta Lopez, Jackie Benavides, Karine 
Vorperian have spent months helping New Yorkers cut through the redtape 
and get the aid they need.
  Nick Martin did an amazing job of connecting resources to needs 
across New York City and Long Island. Cody Peluso and Deanna Robertson 
helped make sure New York's northern suburbs were not forgotten.
  Touring the damaged communities was a heart-wrenching task. Lane 
Bodian, who travels with me, was with me every step of the way. Our 
logistics team of Megan Murphy Vlasto, Jenna Jones, and Alex Victor 
helped make sure we got where we needed to be in those very difficult 
days after the storm and ever since.
  Additionally, two members of my team were hit hard by the storm. They 
lost their houses or their houses were badly flooded. I wish to thank 
them because they ignored their personal situations, particularly in 
the days after the storm, to help New Yorkers. For that, I will always 
be grateful to Kyle Strober, who runs our Long Island office, and to 
Michelle Basic, his assistant, whose family's home was flooded badly on 
Staten Island.
  Finally, the leader of our team is a guy named Mike Lynch, who has 
molded us into a great operation. He did not put his name in here, 
characteristically, but he deserves a huge amount of thanks.
  Of course, my colleagues Senators Gillibrand, Lautenberg, Menendez, 
and their teams were essential. We worked as sort of a seamless web, 
and I look forward to working with them on the implementation of this 
  I wish to thank Senator Inouye. When he was ill, he continued to meet 
with Senators Gillibrand, Menendez, Lautenberg, and myself. We knew how 
much he cared. I know he is looking down, as I think Senator Mikulski 
said, and he is smiling at the good work we did in a bipartisan way to 
get this bill passed.
  Of course, I wish to thank Senator Mikulski. This was the first bill 
she managed. Let it be a metaphor for all her bills: Senator Gillibrand 
and I have just labeled her ``the engineer.'' She led that train down 
the track speedily, without flaw, but carefully and was a great leader.
  Senator Landrieu, the chair of the Homeland Security Subcommittee, 
was incredible in giving us advice and help, and even in those darkest 
days was there for us. The other subcommittee leaders--Senator Leahy, 
Senator Feinstein, Senator Murray--all made sure this package became a 
reality. Their staffs--Charlie Houy, Lilah Helms, Gabby Batkin, Chuck 
Keiffer, and Alex Keenan--were great.
  Of course, my good friend, truly one of the closest friends I have 
and a great leader of this place, who understood the need and went out 
of his way for us, Senator Reid, was invaluable. It would not have 
happened without him or his amazing floor staff, led by Gary Myrick and 
Tim Mitchell, who gave us tremendous advice and help. So I also thank 
  Finally, I thank my Republican colleagues across the aisle for 
putting aside partisanship. We had real differences. But this bill was 
debated and conducted in the right way. We allowed a lot of amendments. 
They were not blocked. There were no cheap shots. It was great.
  I also wish to thank Gary's colleague, Dave Schiappa, for his advice 
and help as well.
  With that, I wish everybody a nice Saturday and see you all on 
  Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to amend the order to allow a 
statement by Senator Pryor.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. SCHUMER. I suggest the absence of a quorum.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
  The legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
  Mr. PRYOR. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for 
the quorum call be rescinded.
  The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
  Mr. PRYOR. Mr. President, I have a couple things to say. First, I 
know the Senator from New York just left, Mr. Schumer. I want the 
people of New York to know, all the citizens of that State, how hard he 
worked to get this legislation passed. The entire delegation of New 
York and New Jersey were outstanding.
  But Senator Schumer, when the storm was still raging, was on the 
phone calling Senators and Congressmen and calling the White House to 
get help for his State and the region. He deserves a lot of credit for 
getting us here. But truthfully, the delegations of those States pulled 
together and showed a lot of leadership. We appreciate that.
  Also, we were so pleased Senator Mikulski was able to take the lead 
on this bill. It was a lot of fun for all of us to see her in action in 
her first real bill that she handled on the floor as chairman of the 
Appropriations Committee.
  I yield the floor.