July 18, 2014

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce Over $7 Million In Federal Funding For Sandy-Related Sewage Decontamination At 392 Homes Throughout Nassau County

Contaminated Sewage Mixed with Surge Floodwaters Rendered 392 Nassau County Homes Uninhabitable & a Public Health Hazard; Residents Were Displaced While Nassau County Decontaminated Sewage in Homes

U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $7.3 million in federal funding for Nassau County for sewage decontamination to 392 residences that were made uninhabitable by the discharge of contaminated sewage mixed with floodwaters due to Superstorm Sandy. The funding is being provided under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

“Nearly 400 homes in Nassau County were flooded with contaminated sewage after Superstorm Sandy and Nassau County worked hard to make sure the community and homeowners were safe,” said Schumer. “This much-needed federal funding will reimburse Nassau County for this critical remediation work and help ensure local taxpayers are not entirely on the hook for this work.”

“Communities and homes across Nassau County suffered severe damage and this federal funding will provide much needed reimbursement for Nassau County,” said Gillibrand. “Federal funding will help make the critical repairs needed to protect the health and well-being of Long Island families and businesses.”

Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano stated, "I thank Senator Schumer, Senator Gillibrand and FEMA for supporting the Clean and Seed Environmental Restoration Program that is helping Hurricane Sandy victims recover from devastation caused by the storm."

Nassau County identified 392 residences that were made uninhabitable due to the contaminated sewage mixed with surge floodwaters of up to 17 feet deep in some locations. After the floodwaters receded, an environmental assessment of these homes determined that contamination by raw sewage rendered them uninhabitable subjecting these residents to long-term displacement. Nassau County declared the homes a public health hazard due to evidence of residual sewage solids within the first floor and basements. The raw sewage had to be removed as it posed an immediate threat to life and property. During the sewage decontamination, other environmental hazards were remediated, such as asbestos. This work is 93 percent complete.

Overall, $7,301,478 in federal funding is being provided to Nassau County for the sewage decontamination work.