PA National Guard troops and helicopters headed to Puerto Rico

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While many lawmakers from both parties said the Jones Act waiver would speed assistance for Puerto Rico and reduce costs, USA shipping executives - including Crowley's - and maritime unions warned that the bottleneck was on the island, not on the seas.

Homeland Secretary Elaine Duke had said she was "very satisfied" with progress, calling it "a good news story in terms of our ability to reach people". "This is a people-are-dying story".

East Granby - A crew of 12 CT airmen left here Friday morning on an aircraft loaded with 11 tons of supplies for Puerto Rico, which is in the midst of a humanitarian crisis after being slammed by Hurricane Maria earlier this month.

The president also touted his administration's recovery and aid efforts in the USA territory since Hurricane Maria roared ashore there last week, relaying praise that he said he'd received from the island's governor.

"Dammit, this is not a good news story. When you don't have food for a baby, it's not a good-news story", Cruz said. Drew's comments followed reports that thousands of shipping containers had been sitting in the hot sun on San Juan's docks, filled with water and food that wasn't getting to residents due to logistical mismanagement and a lack of diesel fuel needed to transport the supplies.

Earlier in the day, Presidential spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said 10,000 government workers, including more than 7,000 troops, were helping Puerto Rico recover.

Most of the roads on the island are still blocked or damaged.

The Republican governor on Thursday also listed a variety of personnel and supplies the state is prepared to make available to the US territory, if requested by federal agencies coordinating relief efforts for the island. The network had several crew on the island before the hurricane hit and have also set up interactive tools such as a website with detailed information on the statuses of towns around the island - some of which has come from crowdsourcing efforts.

United for Puerto Rico is an initiative by the first lady of Puerto Rico and the private sector.

"Today is going to be a very difficult and hard day", Rabin said. And House Speaker Paul Ryan said the Federal Emergency Management Agency's disaster relief account would get a 6.7 billion USA dollar (£5 billion) boost by the end of the week. "We want to do it through organizations to make if more orderly and more effective".

"We are excited to have our doors open to the Latin American Academic Athletics and Arts here today".

Part of the reason for the distribution backlog is that only 20% of truck drivers have reported back to work since Hurricane Maria swept through, according to a representative for Puerto Rican Gov. Ricardo Rosselló.

Rob Aquino, who has aunts, uncles and cousins still in Puerto Rico, showed up to help organize donations.

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