New York Senator Chuck Schumer headed up a high level meeting of local political and community officials on Thursday afternoon in Far Rockaway to hear community complains about the continued difficulties for families in the 5 Towns and Far Rockaway in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
New York State Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder told the 5 Towns Jewish Times that it will take a few days until we can get up to the point where can say we are at disaster level. Right now, the Assemblyman was saying, things are a few notches below,
or even worse than being able to qualify as a disaster.
Right now engineering crews are busy rebuilding a sub station at B.40th Street just above Far Rockaway, a station that serves housing populated by thousands of minority families. One political leader pointed out that the reason there are no police in evidence in the Jewish areas of Far Rockaway is because the full force of the police department is committed to that area to keep the peace in the dark. Once electrical service is restored up there then the technical expertise can be focused on Far Rockaway and parts of Lawrence that still do not have power.
This could mean, according to Mr. Goldfeder, 5 Towners remaining without service for another 4 to 7 days. In addition a feud has developed between Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Michael Bloomberg. According to those involved, Cuomo wants to bring the National Guard into affected areas in order to relieve stress on police. Mayor Bloomberg is opposed to the move. The Guard is currently assembled in Queens waiting for the word from the higher ups to be deployed.
In the meantime the 5 Towns goes into Day 5 without any discernable movement in the direction of restoring services. What is needed is someone to take command of the situation and show residents and citizens that something is being done to relive all the stress and indeed suffering of thousands.
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