Larger fed role sought in Sandy recovery

Nov. 11, 2012 at 1:32 PM

WASHINGTON, Nov. 11 (UPI) -- A New York congressman said he wanted the Obama administration to send in federal reinforcements to play a bigger role in the recovery from Hurricane Sandy.

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., said Sunday his Long Island constituents were losing patience over the pace of recovery work, particularly the seemingly slow progress being made restoring electricity as winter closes in.

"We still have more than 100,000 customers that do not have power, and there is no timeline as to when they're going to get it," King said on CNN's "State of the Union."

King said Washington needed to be more aggressive in leading the recovery and had asked President Obama to put the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in charge of the effort that would include more personnel from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy.

"I'm hoping that they can set up a federal infrastructure led by the Army Corps of Engineers, which would have a comprehensive plan which LIPA [Long Island Power Authority] would be required to follow."

King chastised LIPA for being bogged down and failing to clearly communicate with Long Island storm victims.

Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., told CNN things were going better in his state with power to be largely restored in the next day or two. There remained, however, the problem of shelter for people whose homes were wrecked by Sandy.

"Housing is a big issue as we move forward here ... for those who don't have other resources of family members to stay with," Menendez said.

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