BRONX STORM RELIEF UPDATE
The office of Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. is providing the following information to the public regarding the current state of Hurricane Sandy relief in the Bronx.
Through the diligent work of elected officials, volunteers, community residents, neighborhood organizations, our businesses, non-profits and others, the Bronx is steadily moving towards a recovery from this devastating storm. Together, we will continue our efforts towards a complete recovery from Hurricane Sandy.
Regular updates will be available on our office’s Facebook and Twitter pages. Our Facebook address is www.facebook.com/bronxbp and our Twitter handle is @rubendiazjr.
Borough President Diaz has participated in several conference calls with President Obama and the White House regarding storm relief, discussing the specific challenges faced by the Bronx with the President and his team. Borough President Diaz and his office have also been in regular contact with Con Edison and FEMA concerning borough relief efforts.
As of 1 p.m. this afternoon, Con Edison reports that roughly 23,000 borough customers are without power in the Bronx, down from more than 61,000 customers earlier in the week. To report down lines, outages and check service restoration status by computer or mobile devices do so at www.coned.com. You can also call (800) 752-6633. Please stay away from live wires, and report them to Con Edison when you see them.
FEMA has opened a mobile assistance center in Edgewater Park, assisting the residents of the east Bronx in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. The center will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. beginning Sunday, November 4, and will remain on-site for at least two weeks. Homeowners must first call FEMA to register for assistance before visiting the mobile assistance center. Officials from the Small Business Administration are also on-site. To apply for assistance, visit www.DisasterAssistance.gov or call 1-800-462-7585 (TTY number 800-621-3362). Please provide the following info: your address, names of people in your household, description of the disaster damage, insurance information, Social Security number, a phone number where you can be reached or a message can be left, and am ailing address. If you need FEMA to send disaster assistance funds to your bank please provide the FEMA agent, your account type, account number and routing number.
In addition, FEMA is providing fuel for both cars and gas cans at the Kingsbridge Armory, located at 10 West 195th Street, Bronx, NY 10468. There is a 10 gallon limit per vehicle. Cars can fill up directly off of the truck.
Borough residents still in need of shelter may still go to Lehman College, 250 Bedford Boulevard West, Bronx, NY 10468. A complete list of shelters is available here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/hurricane_shelters.html.
The MTA continues to restore transit service in the City, and Governor Andrew Cuomo announced this morning that more than 80 percent of all service has been restored, including 4/5/6 service between the Bronx and Brooklyn. Full MTA updates can be found at http://www.mta.info.
Council Member Fernando Cabrera’s office is collecting donations of food and clothing at the Kingsbridge Armory. Donation will be accepted through the evening. Necessary donations include water, non perishable food for adults and babies, blankets, generators, water pumps, non prescription medication, batteries and diapers.
Beginning Monday, the office of Council Member James Vacca will be collecting all non-perishable food at his office, located at 3040 E. Tremont Avenue, Room 104. Donations will be sent to families throughout all five boroughs who lost their homes and personal belongings as a result of the devastating Hurricane Sandy. In addition, the Bronx Jewish Community Council Food Pantry located at 2157 Holland Avenue will be collecting non-perishable food on Monday as well, starting at 9 a.m.
The City has opened warming centers in the five boroughs. In the Bronx, those centers can be found at the Bronx House Senior Center, 990 Pelham Parkway South; RAIN Boston East, 3450 Boston Road; and the Riverdale Y, 5625 Arlington Avenue. A full list of warming centers can be found at http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/warming_ctr.html.
Cablevision has issued a message to its customers concerning service restorations. That message can be read at bit.ly/TBzB9a.
Our office would like to thank the many businesses that have stepped up to help our residents, both in the Bronx and across the City. We would specifically like to thank the New York Yankees, who have contributed generously to the Red Cross and continue to work with our office on storm relief. We would also like to Ortega Construction, who was able to provide floodlights to assist the relief effort at the Kingsbridge Armory, and Jetro, who has provided $18,000 in food donations to Catholic Charities.
In addition, we would like to thank Goya Foods and Salsa Catering, who will be providing 500 meals to the residents of Harding Park tomorrow morning.
INFORMATION FOR BUSINESSES IN NEED OF ASSISTANCE
Bronx businesses in need of assistance should contact the Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation at (718) 590-6252. The BOEDC has been in regular contact with FEMA, SBS and the New York City Economic Development Corporation to coordinate business outreach in the wake of the storm.
All Bronx businesses that have been impacted by Hurricane Sandy by loss of property and or loss of business are encouraged to immediately call FEMA at (800) 621-3362 or (800) 462-7585 TTY. Those who have access to the internet can register their claim online at www.disasterassistance.gov. There are operators who will assist you from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week, until further notice.
FEMA funds can be used to cover rental payments for temporary housing for those homes that are unlivable, grants for home repairs and replacement of household items as well as unemployment payments up to 26 weeks for workers who have temporarily lost their jobs due to the disaster.
Small businesses that have registered with FEMA may also apply for disaster loans through the SBA who will provide low interest loans to cover up to $2 MM in loss of property, damage or loss of cash flow. In order to apply for the SBA loans, call (800) 659-2955 or (800) 877-8339 TTY, or register online at www.sba.gov/content/applying-disaster-loan or apply in person at any Disaster Recovery Center.
In addition to the resources cited, BOEDC is providing the following listing that can help Bronx businesses in need:
Red Cross: Provides assistance to displaced residents. Call (877) 733-2767
New York State Homeland Security and Emergency Services: Helps in the recovery of natural disasters as well as other emergencies. The Hurricane Sandy Helpline is (888) 769-7243 or (518) 485-1159
NYC Office of Emergency Management: Coordinates emergency response and recovery in NYC. For the latest on utility and transportation service restoration, go to www.nyc.gov/html/sbs/html/home/hurricane_sandy_businesses.shtml or call 311
NYC Small Business Services (SBS): Provides assistance to small business owners post Hurricane Sandy. Call 311.