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Obama disaster OK provides funds for February snowstorm repairs

Snowbound vehicles remain stranded along Route 347 in

Snowbound vehicles remain stranded along Route 347 in Lake Grove. (Feb. 9, 2013) Credit: Newsday / John Paraskevas

President Barack Obama Tuesday signed a disaster declaration that helps cover the costs of emergency work and repairs in Suffolk caused by February's major snowstorm.

The aid will boost state and local efforts to recover from the Feb. 8-9 blizzard that dumped more than 28 inches of snow -- defeating plows, stranding motorists on the Long Island Expressway and making many residential streets impassable.

Under the declaration, the federal government will share storm-related costs with New York State, local governments and private nonprofits.

New York's Democratic Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, who lobbied for the declaration, said millions of dollars will be available through the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

"Now localtaxpayers are not on the hook entirely," Schumer said in a statement.

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