Press Release

Schumer, Gillibrand, Meeks, Goldfeder Announce Over $8 Million in Federal Funding for Sandy-Related Repairs to the Rockaway Water Pollution Control Plant

Sep 30, 2013

U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand and Congressman Gregory Meeks and Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder today announced over $8 million in federal funding for Sandy-related repairs to the Rockaway Water Pollution Control Plant. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funding is being provided to the New York Department of Environmental Protection (NYDEP).

“The Rockaway Water Pollution Control Plant serves nearly 100,000 and is critical in making sure that our wastewater is free of contamination,” said Schumer. “Superstorm Sandy seriously damaged the facility, flooding its pipes with sea water, and so repairs needed to move forward. I am pleased to announce this federal funding so that the Rockaway Water Pollution Control Plant can properly treat our wastewater in the future.”

 “Superstorm Sandy devastated Rockaway communities and facilities, including the Rockaway’s Water Pollution Control Plant,” said Senator Gillibrand.  “Federal funding will help make the critical repairs needed to protect the health and well-being of Rockaway families and businesses.

“The $8 million reimbursement FEMA is providing for repairs to the Rockaway Water Pollution Control Plant is a big step forward in the Rockaway Peninsula’s recovery from Super Storm Sandy.  The provision of clean water and safe waste disposal will bring a sense of security and protection to the 100,000 residents this facility serves,” said Meeks.

“Access to clean water is essential in ensuring the health and well-being of our families in southern Queens and Rockaway,” said Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder (D-Rockaway). Especially after Sandy, it is imperative that our families know their water sources are safe, protected and do not pose any potential health risks from the damages occurred during the storm. I commend Senators Schumer and Gillibrand and Congressman Meeks for making the safety of our families a top priority and providing federal funding to guarantee our water systems are secure and prepared for any future storms.”

The Rockaway Water Pollution Control Plant treats wastewater from a combined sewage collection system, which serves a population of approximately 98,000 and which drains storm water flow from an area of approximately 3,500 acres.

During Superstorm Sandy, storm surge flooded the Water Pollution Control Plant to a depth ranging from three to four feet deep. Within the facility, there are a series of piping galleries and tunnels that inter-connect at the main processes of the facility. Due to the storm surge, all piping galleries and tunnels were completely filled with sea water, some as deep as 20 feet. Extensive damages occurred within the flooded areas. Motors, lighting, pipe insulation, electrical components, instrumentation, gas detection equipment, pumps, structural components, boilers and generators suffered damage.


This award provides $8,803,530 in federal funds to the NYDEP for repairs to the Rockaway Water Pollution Control Plant.