California Rep. calls district an 'economic disaster area'

The Northern San Joaquin Valley is an economic disaster area, and President Barack Obama should see it for himself and start spending more federal dollars in the region.

That's what Rep. Dennis Cardoza, D-Merced, told the president in a letter this week.

"Seeing the devastation firsthand is the only way you can fully appreciate the extent of the economic destruction plaguing my constituents," Cardoza wrote. "Pursuing farther-reaching solutions to the recession is the only way my suffering communities will obtain the federal resources and assistance they need to keep from falling off the map."

Cardoza has tried to get legislation through Congress to designate the valley as a economic disaster area, but he told the president "the legislative process is slow and cumbersome."

"My constituents cannot wait any longer for economic relief," said Cardoza, noting the region's high unemployment and foreclosure rates. He wants the president to use his executive authority to quickly direct federal funds to the valley.

The congressman wants the Obama administration to distribute additional federal funds to the valley for "public works projects that will create jobs and stimulate the economy."


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