Federal Aid Request
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg released the City’s request for more than $15 billion in Federal aid for recovery from Hurricane Sandy. The Mayor’s letter and accompanying chart, sent today to members of the New York State Congressional Delegation, are available at nyc.gov.
Restoring Power, Heat and Hot Water
Mayor Bloomberg and Department of Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Matthew M. Wambua notified building owners and landlords of multi-family residential buildings impacted by Hurricane Sandy that they must restore power, heat and hot water. Building owners must sign up for NYC Rapid Repairs or take other steps to correct the services, or will be subject to enforcement proceedings. Building owners have two options:
Small Business Matching Grant Program
Mayor Bloomberg announced a new $5.5 million matching grant program for businesses impacted by Hurricane Sandy. The grant program is funded with $5 million from the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City and $500,000 from the Partnership for New York City, and will be administered by the New York Business Development Corporation.
The matching grants are designed to provide additional financial assistance for local businesses already seeking low-interest loans through the City’s existing Emergency Loan Fund. The total amount of loans, grants and other financial assistance available to businesses affected by the storm is more than $45 million.
NYC Rapid Repairs
Mayor Bloomberg announced that NYC Rapid Repairs, a first-of-its-kind program that sends teams of contractors and City inspectors to restore power, heat and hot water at homes impacted by Hurricane Sandy, has begun making repairs and restoring service at homes. Last week, the Mayor visited two homes in the Rockaways where Rapid Repair teams had restored power, heat and hot water. The Mayor also announced the City has authorized $500 million for the Rapid Repairs program.
- Under unprecedented partnership with FEMA, City will coordinate all repair work at no cost to homeowners so that work is done quickly and efficiently.
- Homeowners can sign up on nyc.gov or 311 to secure; they must also register for a FEMA ID number from disasterassistance.gov or 1-800-621-3362
- Nearly 7,000 homeowners have enrolled and more than 4,500 assessments have been scheduled. More than 2,000 assessments have been completed.
$1.2 Billion for Major Repair Work
The City has authorized a total of $1.2 billion for an emergency spending plan to make critical repairs to homes, public schools and public hospitals damaged by Hurricane Sandy. Those expenses include the $500 million for NYC Rapid Repairs and $500 million to restore public school and hospital buildings, as well as:
- $30 million for the Department of Transportation to repair escalators and elevators and electrical systems at St. George and Whitehall Street Staten Island Ferry Terminals, to procure construction services for the Battery Park underpass and West Street underpass, to repair signal lights sand intersections that were damaged by wind and flooding.
- $12 million for the Department of Sanitation Office of Emergency Management to remove debris
- $2.5 million to the Department of Citywide Administrative Services and Human Resource Administration for food and water distribution.
- $2 million to the Department of Citywide Administrative Services for the delivery of maintenance, repair and operations supplies for response operations
- $5 million for electrical plumbing and water line inspections for homes in Staten Island and Queens
- $1.1 million to the Office of Emergency Management for additional ambulances
Food, Water & Supply Distribution at City-Run Resource Sites
The City opened food and water distribution sites in the hardest hit areas. They are staffed by City employees, volunteers, the Salvation Army and National Guard. Locations and hours: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/foodandwater.html.
From Thursday, November 1 through Monday, November 26, the following have been distributed:
- Approximately 2,085,402 meals
- Approximately 622,403 prepared meals
- Approximately 26,500 prepared Thanksgiving meals
- Approximately 723,748 bottles of water
- More than 170,856 blankets
- 6,946 cases of baby formula, diapers and wipes
- 8,788 packs of new underwear (kids and adults)
- 1,552 winter hats
- 3,780 winter gloves
- 3,863 socks
- 4,000 hand-warmers
- 10,758 D batteries
- 15,830 C batteries
- 1,496 AA batteries
- 507 cases of garbage bags
- 3,435 flashlights/lanterns
- 759 cases of toilet paper
- 2,706 cases of bleach and other cleaning materials
- 1,520 mop, shovels and construction buckets
- 1,200 dustpans
- 20,000 cases of Ziploc bags
- 6,000 masks
- 10,000 boxes of cleaning wipes
- 1,500 work gloves
- 928 cases of soap and hand sanitizer
- 433 cases of fruit and apple sauce
- 1,340 cases of dried food and canned food
- 560 cases of Gatorade and juice
Partnership with Local Food Trucks
The Mayors Fund to Advance New York City partnered with the NYC Food Truck Association and local food trucks to coordinate hot food distribution in areas severely impacted by Hurricane Sandy in Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island.
Since the start of the partnership, the food trucks have served or donated 237,896 meals. The locations and hours are available here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/hot_food.html.
On Monday, one school returned to its original building and 12 schools serving approximately 5,400 students remain in temporary locations.
The City, Council of School Supervisors and Administrators and United Federation of Teachers reached an agreement to make up school days lost because of Hurricane Sandy:
- School will be open the last three days of scheduled winter break, February 20 – 22, 2013.
- The half-day scheduled for June 4 will now become a full day of class.
The City coordinated a massive relief effort through NYC Service, the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and nonprofits and also organized medical teams that:
- Canvassed high-rise apartments in the Rockaways, Coney Island and Red Hook
- Provided food, water and medical assessments with prescriptions
- Evacuated 44 people for medical reasons.
The Department of Housing Preservation and Development is also contacting building owners in affected areas to ask if services have been restored and if they can check on their residents in buildings where power and heat are still unavailable, Visiting Nurse Services is following up with tenant outreach. More than 65,000 residents have been contacted through this process.
Members of the National Guard and FEMA representatives also continue to go door-to-door in these communities, and are leaving electric blankets in apartments that have power – but no heat – and protective masks for residents to wear if they’re cleaning up storm damage. In addition, they are recording the need for follow-up visits by nurses or food delivery services, and FEMA representatives are carrying mobile devices enabling them to register for FEMA assistance on the spot.
Mobile Medical Vans with Prescription Services
The City has deployed vans staffed with primary care providers who will be able to provide medical care and distribute commonly prescribed drugs at several locations in the Rockaways, Brooklyn, and Staten Island. Volunteers are also going door-to-door to reach people who may have medical needs but remain in their homes without heat and power. The location and hours are available here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/medical_vans.html.
Power Customers Out
- Total Con Ed customers without power: 1,725
- Total LIPA (Rockaways) customers without power: 9,442
Trees and Debris
- Tree service requests from both Hurricane Sandy and the nor’easter total 26,011, and 15,432 of those were for trees down.
- The City has addressed 19,357 of these emergency tree conditions and crews continue to work around the clock to address conditions.
Sanitation 24-Hour Debris Cleanup Continues
Sanitation crews have collected more than 312,424 tons of trash, debris and tree as a part of storm cleanup operations.
- Vehicles damaged during the storm and left on public roadways are being moved to lots where they will not interfere with use of the streets, response operations, street cleaning and debris removal by the Sanitation Department.
- Owners can call their local police precinct or 1-800-244-5094 to get information about where their vehicle is being stored.
- Heat and hot water have been restored to all buildings impacted by Hurricane Sandy.
- Power has been restored to all NYCHA residential buildings impacted by Hurricane Sandy.
- Elevator service has been restored to all the elevators impacted by the storm.
NYCHA will not begin any new housing court actions or perform evictions for residential tenants living in developments affected by Hurricane Sandy. The moratorium is effective from November 15, 2012 through January 1, 2013.
New NYC Restoration Centers
Mayor Bloomberg launched NYC Restore to connect New Yorkers affected by Hurricane Sandy with the financial, health, environmental and residential services they need – as well as FEMA reimbursement.
- The list of NYC Restoration Centers is available here at http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/dasc.html.
- Human Resources Administration staff will provide information on Medicaid, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and temporary cash assistance.
- Department of Small Business Services will provide information on loans and reimbursements to small businesses.
- The Departments of Health, Consumer Affairs, Housing Preservation and Development and Aging, Administration for Children Services and the Department for Youth and Community Development are also on site.
- The Department of Consumer Affairs Office of Financial Empowerment offers financial counseling, including filing insurance claims, personal debt counseling, and financial guidance on housing recovery.
More information is available at nyc.gov.
Department of Buildings Application & Fee Waiver
As part of the City’s ongoing recovery and assistance operations to help New Yorkers affected by Hurricane Sandy, Mayor Bloomberg signed an emergency order to waive application and permit fees for Hurricane Sandy repair work until further notice.
- Buildings with significant structural damage in need of demolition, alterations or reconstruction will have all their repair work fees waived.
- In addition, all fees for electrical and plumbing repair work will be waived until further notice for any building damaged by the storm.
City Expedites Licensing for Home Improvement Contractors
The City is expediting additional Home Improvement Contractor licenses to encourage unlicensed contractors or those working out of New York City to come work on damaged property.
- The Department of Consumer Affairs will expedite fingerprinting and applications so that licenses are issued in two days.
- Home improvement contractors can begin the license application online or in-person at the Consumer Affairs Licensing Center (42 Broadway, 5th Floor).
- There are currently 13,200 licensed home improvement contractors in New York City.
- City encourages DCA-licensed contractors interested in subcontracting as part of NYC Rapid Repairs to register at bteany.com/rapidrepairs.
- New Yorkers should review tips about hiring contractors at nyc.gov/homeimprovement.
Alternate Side Parking
Alternate side parking regulations are suspended indefinitely in the neighborhoods impacted by Hurricane Sandy. They include:
- Queens Community Board 14: Broad Channel, Breezy Point, Belle Harbor, Neponsit, Bayswater, Edgemere, Rockaway Park, Rockaway and Far Rockaway, and is delimited by Jamaica Bay to the north, the Nassau County line to the east and the Atlantic Ocean to the south. Note that as Staten Island does not have ASP, that borough is not affected by the reinstatement of regulations in the remainder of the city.
- Brooklyn Community Board 13: Coney Island, Brighton Beach, Gravesend and Sea Gate, and is delimited by Gravesend Bay on the west, 26th Avenue, 86th Street and Avenue Y on the north, Coney Island Avenue and Corbin Place on the east, and Lower New York Bay on the south (indicating that the west side of Corbin Place will be exempt from ASP regulations, while the east side will not, for example).
- Brooklyn Community Board 15: Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Kings Bay, Gerritsen Beach, Kings Highway, East Gravesend, Madison, Homecrest and Plum Beach, and is delimited by Corbin Place, Coney Island Avenue, Avenue Y, 86th street, Avenue U and MacDonald Avenue, Avenue P and Kings Highway on the north, Nostrand Avenue and Marine Park on the east, as well as by the Atlantic Ocean on the south.
- Brooklyn Community Board 18: Canarsie, Bergen Beach, Mill Basin, Flatlands, Marine Park, Georgetown and Mill Island and is delimited by Nostrand Avenue on the west, the Long Island Rail Road viaduct on the north, Van Sinderen Avenue and Louisiana Avenue on the east and Short Parkways on the south.
Odd-Even Gasoline Purchasing System Ends
Mayor Bloomberg lifted the emergency order establishing an odd-even license plate system for gasoline purchases. It expired on Saturday, November 24, at 6:00 AM.
- Mayor Bloomberg established the odd-even license plate system on Friday, November 9.
- The odd-even system was extended to keep gas lines manageable during some of the heaviest travel days of the year.
- More than 85 percent of gas stations in the city are now operational and the available supply of gasoline and diesel fuel is only expected to continue to increase.
Staten Island Ferry Service Begins
Mayor Bloomberg and New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner Sadik-Khan announced that New York Water Taxi was selected to run a new, temporary service from Staten Island to Manhattan.
- The service began today and will run for eight weeks as storm recovery work continues.
- Ferries will depart the newly-constructed landing at Great Kills each half hour from 6:30 to 9:00 AM for Pier 11 at Wall Street, and continue to 35th Street.
- Ferries will return to Staten Island and arrive in Great Kills every half hour between 5:40 and 8:10 PM.
- One-way fare will be $2.00
Expanded Staten Island Bus Service
The City has expanded bus service for the X23 and X24 lines in Staten Island to meet rising demands as a result of the storm.
- Atlantic Express will operate one additional bus on the X23 route and one additional bus on the X24 route.
- Each additional bus will make four trips, for a total of eight additional trips per day.
The Economic Development Corporation worked with Atlantic Express Bus to begin operating temporary additional express bus service.
Rockaway Ferry Service
Seastreak ferry service is now running between the Rockaways and Manhattan. Ferries depart from Beach 108th Street and Beach Channel Drive and stop at Pier 11 in Lower Manhattan. There are free transfer between Pier 11 and East 34th Street in Midtown. One-way fares will cost $2.00.
The Economic Development Corporation installed a temporary landing in the Rockaways to accommodate the temporary ferry service.
Free Parking for Rockaway Ferry Service
Free parking is available for those in the Rockaways taking the new ferry service to Manhattan. The parking lot, which was secured thanks to the assistance of National Grid, is across Beach Channel Drive from the new Rockaway ferry landing.
Support to Businesses
The City’s Department of Small Business Services and Economic Development Corporation have put together a package of support for NYC businesses impacted by the storm:
- Emergency low-interest loans of up to $25,000 for businesses that have been interrupted and suffered damage as a result of the storm. Applications are available at any of the City’s NYC Business Solutions Centers, by calling 311 and asking for “NYC Business Emergency Loan,” or by visiting on.nyc.gov/contactnycbiz.
- For businesses facing significant rebuilding costs, the City will provide sales tax exemptions of up to $100,000 on purchases of materials, equipment and related services needed to rebuild. Learn more here: nycedc.com/backtobusiness
- For displaced businesses, the City has identified more than 170,000 square feet that will be made available free of charge, including 40,000 square feet of City space at the Brooklyn Army Terminal, and more than 125,000 square feet of space that private landlords have made available, across the five boroughs. A full listing of commercial spaces and other resources is available at nycedc.com/donations.
- Information on disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration is available at any of the City’s NYC Business Solutions Centers, by calling 800-659-2955, or by visiting sba.gov/disaster.
- Alliance for Coney Island—a nonprofit organization formed, with the help of the City, to continue the transformation of Coney Island into a year-round, world-class recreational oceanfront destination—launched ConeyRecovers.org, a multipronged relief and recovery effort to help Coney Island residents and businesses dealing with the devastating aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. The Alliance is comprised of all major Coney businesses, and the City has provided them with $630,000 in funding originally allocated to the Coney Island Development Corporation which will wind down operations.
Shelter for Those without Heat
- Those in need of shelter should call 311, visit nyc.gov or a Restoration Center.
- The City also has opened daytime-only warming centers at senior centers in every borough: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/warming_ctr.html.
- Those who are using generators in their homes to run their heat should be very careful to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning by never using portable generators indoors, in garages or near open windows.
- Early signs of hypothermia include uncontrollable shivering, confusion or sleepiness, slowed or slurred speech, stiffness in arms and legs, poor control over body movements and slow reaction.
Community Recovery Directors Assist with Immediate Needs in Impacted Areas
Mayor Bloomberg appointed senior level New York City managers this week to identify urgent needs, stay in close contact with the community leader and deploy resources to meet needs. The City’s Community Recover Directors are:
- Haeda Mihaltses, Staten Island
- Matt Mahoney, Manhattan and the Bronx
- Nazli Parvizi, Brooklyn
- Diahann Billings-Burford, Queens
Brad Gair Appointed Director of Housing Recovery Operations
The Mayor appointed Brad Gair, one of the nation’s top emergency management professionals, to lead the effort to address challenge of providing longer-term housing for New Yorkers displaced from their homes by Hurricane Sandy. Many buildings that were flooded are going to be out of commission for a long time because of damage to boilers and electrical systems. This includes public housing, as well as private apartments and houses.
Air BNB Temporary Housing
Air BNB, an on-line service that connects people seeking temporary housing with those who have unused space, has launched a new platform to link New Yorkers displaced by Hurricane Sandy to New Yorkers who want to offer free places to stay. Air BNB is providing with service at no fee, and information is available at airbnb.com/sandy.
Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund
- To date, more than 14,900 donors from around the country have contributed more than $41 million to the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City in support of Hurricane Sandy relief.
- Cash donations to support these and other efforts can be made through the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City. Learn more here: nyc.gov/fund
- Cash donations are preferable to in-kind donations because the logistics of collecting and distributing those supplies are complex.
- Anyone wishing to make cash contributions can go to nyc.gov or call 311 for details.