U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer urged top officials at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to quickly approve approximately $4 million in federal funding for the City of New Rochelle to rebuild the Municipal Marina and Hudson Park beach, which were ravaged during Hurricane Sandy.
Schumer explained that New Rochelle officials were originally told by FEMA immediately following Hurricane Sandy that this rebuilding project was eligible for 90% federal reimbursement, but FEMA has since declared that the damage was not all caused by the storm and is therefore ineligible.
This abrupt change has forced New Rochelle to re-submit its application for funding, with new forms of evidence, at multiple points over the past year, which has forced the city to incur additional expenses and project delays.
In particular, New Rochelle has already put $1 million toward the rebuilding process with the understanding that it would eventually be reimbursed, a process that Schumer says has been delayed for too long. Beyond those expenses, New Rochelle simply cannot move forward and spend any additional money without FEMA’s full assurance that the project will be eligible, and without the reimbursement for work already owed.
In coordination with New York State’s Emergency Management Office (SEMO), The City of New Rochelle is on the verge of submitting its application for funding approval again, and Schumer is urging FEMA & SEMO to approve the application as quickly as possible, so that the beach and marina can be brought back into a state of good repair.
Due to lack of certainty, repairs are less than 10% complete.
Press Release, March 21, 2014