N.Y. Gov. Cuomo: FEMA Program Will Cover N.Y. Home Repairs

November 16, 2012

Federally-paid contractors will do basic repairs so tens of thousands of New York victims of Superstorm Sandy can stay in, or return to, their damaged homes during major work, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and federal officials announced Wednesday.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is offering new, supplemental aid aimed at helping New Yorkers button up their houses and fix some electrical and plumbing problems to avoid staying in shelters at a time when hotel vacancies are scarce in New York City and on Long Island.

“Now it is time to restore and rebuild these homes, and help people get back in their homes in time for winter,” Cuomo said.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo

FEMA’s Michael Byrne said the program is new. He said New York presented a unique housing challenge to FEMA that couldn’t be addressed by available rental housing, hotels or temporary housing units.

The immediate repairs include fixing electric meters and exterior damage, replacing doors, putting tarps on roofs, and other minor structural and electrical work. The program is available in counties with federal disaster declarations.

The teams will include more than 1,000 contractors and other experts from local unions and the Long Island Builders Institute, said the institute’s Mitch Pally. He said it is easier on recovery efforts to keep New York City and Long Island residents in their homes while major repairs are under way.

Teams assigned by FEMA will evaluate the work and then dispatch contractors who will be reimbursed by the federal agency. New Yorkers need to contact their city or county government to take part in the Emergency Assistance program. FEMA said to inquire about the program, call 800-621-3362.

Latest Comments

  • November 28, 2012 at 7:07 pm
    Larry Velasco says:
    Now this, is a GREAT idea. It would give them some self-esteem, if they want it. I am an electrical contractor in California and have done many project for the government. I h... read more
  • November 28, 2012 at 7:01 pm
    Larry Velasco says:
    I am an electrical contractor from California and wanted to do work in the regions affected by Sandy. I see that FEMA is using union contractors. I am not union for several va... read more
  • November 19, 2012 at 10:21 am
    Ins Guy says:
    And 1 year later, we'll call in Mike Holmes to fix all the problems. Let's just make sure they are apprenticed properly and doing things correctly -- but yes, put them to work... read more
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