NEW YORK— Gov. Andrew Cuomo met with the state’s congressional delegation in Midtown Monday to discuss a request for $32 billion in federal aid for restoration from Hurricane Sandy. A further $9 billion for hurricane prevention may be requested later after the full damage caused by the storm is known.
Republican Reps. Michael Grimm of Staten Island and Peter King of Long Island were among the lawmakers Cuomo enlisted for help. Getting Congress to approve the aid will be a bipartisan effort, said Cuomo.
“I understand the fiscal pressures they [Congress] are under, and the fiscal pressures New York is under … but the nation has a history of helping each other in time of need,” Cuomo said. “The tax payers of New York cannot shoulder this burden.”
Damages are still being assessed, and costs are likely to rise.
—Governor Andrew Cuomo
In the past decade, Congress has provided as much as $120 billion worth of aid after natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina.
Cuomo said that although Hurricane Katrina had a much larger death toll, the storm impacted fewer homes. Around 800,000 residents lost power as a result of Hurricane Katrina, while 2 million people lost power in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, he said.
The $32 billion includes Mayor Bloomberg’s $9.8 billion request for recovery money for New York City.
Bloomberg said Monday the estimated cost of hurricane damage to the city is $19 billion. Private insurance is expected to cover $3.8 billion of the cost, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will reimburse $5.4 billion.
Costs that are ineligible under FEMA include long-term housing, and shoreline restoration and protection.
The city has also authorized $1.2 billion for repair work, around half to be used to restore public schools and hospitals.
$4.8 billion in uninsured private losses
$3.8 billion in insured private losses
$4.5 billion in losses to and costs incurred by City agencies
$5.7 billion in lost gross City product
$0.2 billion for US Army Corps of Engineers
The city’s Rapid Repair Program will receive $500 million in funding to help owners of residential properties repair and restore utilities to hurricane-damaged homes. Bloomberg urged landlords to sign up for the program as soon as possible, warning that otherwise they will be held accountable for the repairs.
Hurricane Sandy caused an estimated $5.7 billion in lost economic output in New York. The Department of Transportation is estimating $1 billion in incremental costs, including nearly $800 million for street repairs.
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