Storm-related grants recommended for Long Island

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Long Island could receive nearly $61 million in two hazard mitigation grants the governor has recommended the federal government authorize.

The grants, which Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced Friday, include $40 million for Island Park in Nassau and $20,980,082 for Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center and Our Lady of Consolation Nursing Home in West Islip in Suffolk.

The grants will primarily be funded through the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which must approve the state's recommendations. The grants were among 10 totaling $128 million Cuomo announced.

Donald Caetano, a spokesman for FEMA in Manhattan, said his agency's job is to approve the applications "if they meet all of the eligibility requirements."

Island Park, a village of about 4,500 people, was inundated with 6 to 8 feet of water during superstorm Sandy and lost its elementary school, firehouse, village hall and houses of worship. The community is exposed to increased flooding during normal rainfall and during major storms, Cuomo's office said.

According to Cuomo's office, "more than 30 percent of residents have not returned."

"The grant recognizes the depth and breadth of the devastation Sandy brought to this village. It will help keep our people here," said Mayor Michael McGinty.

The proposed action would include a thorough field examination of drainage systems and existing municipal bulkheads and could include tide gates, subsurface stormwater storage, bulkhead upgrades, and road raising.

In West Islip, the 537-bed hospital and 450-bed nursing home are operated by Catholic Health Services of Long Island and share a campus a few hundred feet from the Great South Bay.

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Proposed projects would provide continuity of power to both sites in emergencies by replacing generators and elevating electrical systems.

"This funding would permit us to maintain operations during and after future extreme weather events," said Theresa Jacobellis, a spokeswoman for Good Samaritan.

With Sophia Chang

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