Storm Recovery and Rebuilding More Resilient Communities
Governor Cuomo continues his efforts to address the long-term needs of victims of Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Irene, and Tropical Storm Lee and other major storms that have hit the State in the past years, while working to make the State safer in the face of future natural disasters. Much of the state’s efforts have been funded by $30 billion in federal aid that Governor Cuomo fought to obtain for relief efforts. The Governor’s efforts are focused in three primary areas: assisting in recovery and rebuilding for individuals, businesses, and communities; improving the state’s emergency preparedness and response systems; and upgrading the state’s infrastructure to better withstand major weather incidents.
To help coordinate these efforts, Governor Cuomo established the Office of Storm Recovery to centralize recovery and rebuilding efforts. The office coordinates the spending of approximately $3.8 billion in federal CDBG funding in four main areas: housing, small businesses, infrastructure, and Community Reconstruction. He launched a $17 billion statewide recovery strategy that aims to transform New York’s infrastructure, transportation networks, energy supply, coastal protection, weather warning system and emergency management to better protect New Yorkers from future extreme weather. The strategies include:
- Implementing the largest reconstruction of the State’s transit system in 110 years with $5 billion of federal funds;
- Issuing more than $315 million to help 6,934 homeowners rebuild their storm-impacted homes. An additional $314 million has been offered to 764 homeowners across the state to purchase properties that were substantially damaged in the storms.
- Launching the NY Rising Community Reconstruction Program, a bottom-up, planning process designed to empower communities that suffered significant damage from any of the three storms.
- Creating a statewide Strategic Fuel Reserve and statewide gas station back-up power on critical routes;
- Hardening the State’s electric grid and creating 10 independent community-based electric distributions systems;
- Building new natural infrastructure to protect New York’s coastline, and provide advanced flood control for inland waterways;
- Building a state-of-the-art weather detection system to provide early warnings in advance of future severe weather events
- Training a new Citizen First Responder Corps to make New York residents the best prepared in the nation to deal with emergencies and disasters;
- Expanding the $650 million NY Rising Community Reconstruction program to allow 124 communities around the state to create individualized storm resilience plans.