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US Senate Passes Zika Funding Bill

MGN Online

The U.S. Senate has passed a bill that includes funding for efforts to combat the Zika virus.

Originally, Senate Democrats had blocked the bill from moving forward Tuesday because it did not include help for those affected by the water crisis in Flint, Michigan.

But, Wednesday, after top Congressional leaders promised there would be money for Flint after the election, the funding bill had enough votes to pass. The House is expected to okay that funding Wednesday as well.

The bill is a temporary measure to avoid a government shutdown. It includes $1.1 billion for anti-Zika efforts. It also includes $15 million for states that have locally contracted cases of the mosquito-borne disease. So far, that’s only in Florida.

With six new cases reported Wednesday, the state has 115 non-travel related cases.

For more news updates, follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter: @SaschaCordner.

Sascha Cordner has more than ten years of public radio experience. It includes working at NPR member station WUFT-FM in Gainesville for several years. She's worked in both radio and TV, serving in various capacities as a reporter, producer and anchor. She's also a graduate of the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in telecommunications. She is the recipient of 15 awards from the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and Edward R. Murrow. Her award-winning stories include her coverage on the infamous “Dozier School for Boys” and a feature titled "Male Breast Cancer: Lost in the Sea of Pink." Currently, Sascha serves as the host and producer of local and state news content for the afternoon news program "All Things Considered" at WFSU. Sascha primarily covers criminal justice and social services issues. When she's not reporting, Sascha likes catching up on her favorite TV shows, singing and reading. Follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter:@SaschaCordner.