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When the Instagram post was shared, Congress was considering legislation that included $20 million in funding for Jackson, Mississippi’s water infrastructure. The legislation passed Sept. 30.
Much more funding will be needed to completely address the problems in Jackson.
After years of decline and neglect, the water infrastructure in Jackson, Mississippi, failed in August, leaving city residents scrambling for access to clean water. Fixing the problem could cost more than $1 billion.
According to social media posts, none of the money has been forthcoming.
"$12 billion more for Ukraine on top of $100+ billion while Jackson, Mississippi has yet to receive any funding to fix their water infrastructure," said a Sept. 27 post on Instagram shared by actor D.L. Hughley. The post was a screenshot of a tweet.
"Make it make sense … " Hughley wrote in the caption.
The Instagram post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.)
The post appears to refer to a bill that was under consideration at the time of the Instagram post and that passed Sept. 30. The legislation allotted $12 billion in new aid to Ukraine. But what the post does not acknowledge is that the same legislation also allocated $20 million to the city of Jackson for repairs to its water infrastructure.
It’s a small portion of the overall funding required to completely fix the problems in Jackson. And while the city might not have the money in hand yet because the legislation just passed, it’s misleading to say the city was completely ignored.
At the time of Hughley’s post, Congress was set to consider a funding package to address multiple needs, including money for Ukraine and Jackson. That bill, H.R. 6833, passed Sept. 30 and President Joe Biden signed it the same day.
Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., said in a press release that the $20 million allocated for Jackson would "build on the initial $5 million provided by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers earlier this year through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law."
"I recognize this funding will not be enough to address the long-standing water infrastructure issues in Jackson, but this is a good start," Wicker said in his release.
Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba said during an Aug. 30 press conference that it would take $1 billion to fix the water distribution system, and billions more to fix all of the water problems. We reached out to his office but received no response.
The issue is also one of racial disparity — in Jackson, more than 80% of residents are Black.
An Instagram post says Ukraine got $12 billion more in funding but Jackson, Mississippi, has not received any.
At the time the Instagram post was shared, Congress was considering legislation to provide money to both Ukraine and Jackson. The legislation passed Sept. 30 and was signed into law the same day, allocating $20 million to Jackson for its infrastructure.
Much more funding will be needed to fully address the city’s problems. But though the city might not have the money in hand yet because the funding was just approved, it’s misleading to say the city was completely ignored.
The claim contains an element of truth but ignores critical facts that would give a different impression. We rate it Mostly False.
NPR, The water crisis in Jackson follows years of failure to fix an aging system, Aug. 31, 2022
Mississippi Free Press, U.S. Senate Approves $20 Million For Jackson Water System, Sept. 29, 2022
D.L. Hughley Instagram post, Sept. 27, 2022
AP, AP source: Funding bill includes more than $12B on Ukraine, Sept. 26, 2022
Mississippi Today, Jackson garners $20 million in federal legislation for water woes, Sept. 30, 2022
The White House, Bills Signed: H.R. 6833, S. 3895, S. 3969, S. 4900, Sept. 30, 2022
Senator Roger Wicker, Wicker votes to advance continuing legislation, Sept. 27, 2022
Mississippi Free Press, Rep. Bennie Thompson Seeks $200 Million Federal Aid For Jackson Water System, Sept. 23, 2022
CNN, For Jackson and Flint, the water may be back but the trust is gone, Sept. 8, 2022
PolitiFact, What the federal infrastructure bill means for water systems nationwide, Sept. 2, 2022
Congress, H.R.3684 - Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, accessed Oct. 6, 2022
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