Below are important updates on Hurricane Sandy Restoration. Some of this information is repeated for those just coming online.
I continue my battles with LIPA to get all of the Senate District up to full restoration of power and to be much more proactive in informing customers of ERT (estimated restoration times). Their response to this disaster have been unsatisfactory, and their inability to communicate with those without power is unacceptable.
I assure you that when this is all over and we return to full restoration and a sense of normalcy, there will be major changes, but in the meantime all my efforts are being directed to ensuring a swift end to the outages. I myself am still without power, so I assure you, I am well aware of the misery being felt by all Long Islanders, and especially those who are still without power.
Nassau County has imposed a temporary “odd/even” gasoline rationing to ease congestion and frustration at gas stations. Vehicles with plates ending in an even number or “0” can buy gas on even numbered days, odd number plates on odd days, and those without a number (vanity plates, for example) will be permitted to fill up on odd-numbered days.
Other important information (some of this is repeated for those who have just gotten e-mail/Internet service back):
IMPORTANT WEBSITES, LINKS AND PHONE NUMBERS:
· LIPA: http://www.lipower.org/stormcenter/.
· NATIONAL GRID: http://nationalgridus.com.
· Governor's Office: http://www.governor.ny.gov/
· New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services: http://www.dhses.ny.gov/
· Nassau County Office of Emergency Management: http://www.nassaucountyny.gov/agencies/OEM/ (516-573-0636)
· Nassau County Red Cross: 516-747-3500
· LIRR 24 Hour Travel Information: 718-217-5477
· NICE Bus Information: 516-228-4000
Other important information:
· If you have downed wires that are not visible from the street, please contact my office by E-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org). Please list your NAME, STREET ADDRESS, the nearest cross street, and provide me with your e-mail & a cell phone number.
· You can apply for Disaster Relief though the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for damage sustained during the Hurricane. Register through FEMA at www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA. The toll-free number will operate between 7 am and 10 pm seven days a week until further notice.
· Nassau County has FOUR shelter locations for those without power, plus a “pets only” shelter. They are as follows:
o Nassau Community College (1 Education Drive, Garden City)
o Levittown Memorial Gerald Claps Career & Technical Center (150 Abbey Lane, Levittown)
o Farmingdale High School (150 Lincoln Street, Farmingdale)
o Manhasset High School (200 Memorial Place, Manhasset)
o Pet Shelter – Mitchell Field Athletic Complex (this only accepts pets)
· Additional warming centers have been opened in Nassau County, including the Nassau County Senior Center in Oyster Bay, and the Bethpage Library which are open from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm.
· Warming centers with shower facilities are open from 8:00 am to 11:00 pm daily at Cantiague Park, the Nassau County Aquatic Center and the Mitchell Athletic Complex.
· If you have life-threatening conditions, please call 911.
· Report any other power outages to LIPA at 1-800-490-0075. Even though they are likely aware that you are without power, you should still report any outages directly to them.
· If you smell natural gas, contact National Grid at 1-800-490-0045 (if you simply have no gas service, contact them at 1-800-930-5003).
· New Yorkers are now eligible for a 90-day grace period on student loan repayments.
· State chartered banks have agreed to waive consumer fees until at least November 15th (such as atm fees, late payment charges, etc.). Contact your bank to see if they have agreed to participate in this.
· New York State has requested a federal waiver to help expedite care and relief to by cutting federal red tape in the state’s health care delivery.
· The state cut through regulations to allow for the distribution of donated food and water for distribution to recovery sites.
· New York requested and received hundreds of out-of-state National Guard members and vehicles to assist in Hurricane Sandy restoration efforts; New York itself has mobilized thousands of New York National Guard members as well.
· Governor Cuomo has announced homeowners will not have to pay hurricane deductibles on insurance claims stemming from damage caused by Monday’s storm.
· The DMV has extended renewal deadlines on drivers licenses, learner permits, non-driver ID cards and vehicle registrations. (Visit http://www/dmv.ny.gov/ for more information).
· The Department of Tax & Finance extended tax filing and payment. Visit www.tax.ny.gov to see special documents to provide guidance on extensions.
· File insurance claims as soon as possible, if you haven't already done so (http://www.naic.org/documents/consumer_alert_what_to_expect_disaster_damaged_home.htm).
· The SBA offers several low-interest, long-term disaster loans to small businesses in declared disaster areas (http://www.sba.gov/category/navigation-structure/loans-grants/small-business-loans/disaster-loans).
· Apply for tax relief if needed, which will allow for expedited returns or delayed tax filings (http://www.irs.gov/Businesses/Small-Businesses-&-Self-Employed/Disaster-Assistance-and-Emergency-Relief-for-Individuals-and-Businesses-1).
· FEMA and the American Red Cross also offer a number of services, including free legal services, crisis counseling, and advice for financial recovery.
My office stands ready to assist you in any way possible. For power outages, and especially downed wires not visible from the street, please do not hesitate to contact me by email (email@example.com) with a description of the problem, your name, address, email, and a cell phone contact number.