Cuomo met in Albany with the state's congressional delegation, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and officials from Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties to assess damage from the Halloween-week superstorm that devastated parts of the East Coast.
"The devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy is of unprecedented proportions, ranking among the worst natural disasters in our nation's history in terms of loss of life, property damage, and economic impact," Cuomo said.
Cuomo estimated the storm caused $32.8 billion in damage. He also estimated the state will need $9.1 billion for "commonsense" mitigation and prevention projects, including flood protection for the World Trade Center site and road and subway tunnels, fuel supply system power generation and sewage treatment protection, and secondary power supply systems for hospitals.
"We will do everything we can to maximize the relief New York receives," Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., said. "Make no mistake, this will not be an easy task, particularly given the impending 'fiscal cliff,' and a Congress that has been much less friendly to disaster relief than in the past. ... We will not rest until the federal response meets New York's deep and extensive needs."
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., said the federal government must step in.
"Images of the devastation New York suffered from Hurricane Sandy only tells half the story," she said. "I have spent day after day meeting with New York families whose lives have been shattered, their homes destroyed and businesses in rubble. New Yorkers are resilient, we bend but we do not break, but we can't do it alone."
"Given the catastrophic damage inflicted on New York, I am committed to working with Governor Cuomo and the congressional delegation to ensure that Long Island and New York get the federal assistance they need to recover," Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., said.