How to Pay a $4.5 Billion Bill

February 11, 2013 at 9:44 am

What do the New York Aquarium, Bellevue Hospital and a wiretapping room for the Manhattan DA all have in common? Mayor Michael Bloomberg will be asking the federal government to pay to rebuild their facilities, and many more, in the wake of superstorm Sandy.

Last week, just one day after Congress passed a $51 billion–dollar Hurricane Sandy relief bill, the city’s budget office wasted no time in proposing how New York City will recoup from the federal government its $4.5 billion in Sandy-related spending.

The New York Aquarium and its parent organization seek to claim $75 million from FEMA. Photo: Wildlife Conservation Society/Julie Larsen Maher

The city will be asking the federal government to cover all of the city’s declared costs, according to Lauren Passalacqua, spokesperson in the Mayor’s Office.

So far, The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has only committed $520 million in post-Sandy aid to New York State, about $445 million of which is intended for private and government recipients in New York City. These funds mostly cover debris removal and emergency protective measures, costs that were incurred immediately before, during and after the storm.

Bloomberg’s revised budget for fiscal year 2013, which runs through June, shows that the city intends to ask for at least $1.4 billion in all to cover the costs of debris removal and emergency protective measures. The budget also includes about $175 million to deal with damaged roads, bridges, buildings and parks.

Read more and view an interactive budget breakdown on The New York World’s website.


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