Obama to Help Clean Up NY Tornado Damage

Obama to Help Clean Up NY Tornado Damage

The federal government has approved New York State's request for aid in cleaning up the wreckage from last month's severe storm and tornadoes. According to a press release issued by Governor Paterson's office this morning, President Barack Obama has declared Queens, Brooklyn, and Staten Island "federal disasters," making them eligible for federal reimbursement of up to 75 percent of the costs involved in response, debris removal, and public property repair.

A "preliminary" estimate predicts that cleanup costs will exceed $27 million, and while Paterson's office says the Federal Emergency Management Agency "has not yet acted" on its request for assistance to private homeowners, renters, and businesses, FEMA says "additional designations" may still be made after further inspection.

So sit tight, New Yorkers. Obama may fix your tornado-mangled fences, after all.

[shernandez@villagevoice.com]


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