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FEMA agrees to $6.23M for cleanup

The Town of Smithtown will receive more than $6 million in federal reimbursements for superstorm Sandy cleanup costs.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has agreed to pay Smithtown $6.23 million, which will cover most of the town's costs for collecting, removing and disposing of debris left on town roads by the Oct. 29 storm, New York's Democratic Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced last week.

The town spent about $6.9 million for debris removal, Smithtown Supervisor Patrick Vecchio said, adding that he was satisfied with the FEMA reimbursement.

Town workers spent more than 27,500 hours clearing nearly 30,000 tons of debris from Smithtown roads, according to a statement released jointly by Gillibrand and Schumer. Debris was dumped at the Brookhaven Town landfill at $75 per ton and at Omni Recycling of Babylon for $20 per ton, the release said.

"This federal reimbursement for debris cleanup is critical in making sure that Long Islanders are not entirely on the hook for these expenses," Schumer said in the statement.

Gillibrand said the FEMA funds "will provide much needed relief for Smithtown families and businesses impacted by superstorm Sandy."

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