Cuomo: Transit, utilities get half of NY's $33B Sandy aid

Public transit and utilities are expected to get

Public transit and utilities are expected to get nearly half of the $33 billion in federal aid New York is to receive for superstorm Sandy recovery, the Cuomo administration said Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013. In November, after touring devastation in the New York metro area, Gov. Andrew Cuomo spoke to reporters. With him, from left, are Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) Transportation Secretary Shaun Donovan and President Barack Obama. (Nov. 15, 2012) (Credit: Getty Images)

ALBANY -- Nearly half of the $33 billion of federal aid New York is to receive for superstorm Sandy recovery would go for public transit and energy and utility repairs and upgrades, according to the Cuomo administration.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo met Wednesday for about an hour with federal Housing Secretary Shaun Donovan in Manhattan to discuss aid rollout. Donovan is the Obama administration's point man on Sandy. Administration officials declined to comment afterward.

According to a preliminary draft document, New York would allocate $10.2 billion for public transit and $6 billion for "energy and utilities."


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Several other categories would top $1 billion in expenditures, including "coastal and natural infrastructure" ($4.4 billion), health care facilities ($2.1 billion), permanent housing ($1.6 billion) and temporary housing ($1 billion).

About $470 million would be used for "emergency preparedness" and $425 million to aid small businesses. Another $100 million would be earmarked for debris removal.

President Barack Obama signed a $60 billion aid package last month for states affected by the Oct. 29 storm. New York is expected to receive about $33 billion -- but the money will trickle out over years, officials have said.

New York is preparing an "action plan" for the funds, which federal agencies must approve.

On Monday, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced the state would receive $3.5 billion in community development block grant funds, the first allocation of federal relief funds. The funds can be used for housing repairs or replacement costs not covered by other sources; repairs for uninsured small businesses; and affordable housing and community development in low- and moderate-income neighborhoods.

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