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Shore Congressman Frank Pallone’s Sandy Act wins Senate approval in Washington

The Sandy Act, which also got support from New York Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer, will help speed up cell phone tower repairs following disasters and is now one house vote shy of getting to President Donald Trump’s desk following a Senate approval on Tuesday.

Rep. Frank Pallone
Rep. Frank Pallone (Townsquare Media NJ)

Introduced in 2015, the Sandy Act will help speed up cell phone tower repairs following disasters and cuts obstacles from vital communication line repairs during emergencies.

After passing in the senate Shore Congressman Frank Pallone (D-6) is confident it’ll be approved by the house and be put on President Donald Trumps desk.

“I’m just glad it passed the senate and we’re going to try and get this bill to pass both houses and gets to the presidents desk,” said Pallone. “I’m sure that President Trump will sign it once it gets there.”

“We were able to get this passed in the house fairly quickly, we were waiting for the senate to pass it, so I don’t think the house is going to be a problem,” said Pallone.

The measure will additionally give officials priority entry to restricted areas where repairs are needed and set-up WI-Fi access for 911 services.

Pallone seeks to strengthen telecommunications in disasters

Pallone says it’s critical to have increased communication efforts during storms for repairs.

“It (The Sandy Act) allows for emergency access which is really important because some utilities have the ability in the middle of a storm or right afterwards to go in and do repairs, but communication facilities were not in that category,” said Pallone.

The bill which removes obstacles from communication line repairs during emergencies has already seen itself work with Hurricane’s Harvey and Irma.

Residents would also have access to other cell networks should theirs fail during a disaster.

“In the latest two storms it was very important in terms of providing information on outages,” said Pallone. “People were also be able to, if there was still an operating communications system of service providers, that they could access it.”

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