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New York City wants Sandy evacuees out of hotels

New York City wants Sandy evacuees out of hotels
This photo released by the MTA on October 30, 2012 shows damage done to Staten Island Railway's Clifton Shop in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. The super storm made landfall last night in New Jersey and has claimed at least 16 lives in the United States, and has caused massive flooding across much of the eastern seaboard. UPI/MTA | License Photo

NEW YORK, Sept. 25 (UPI) -- New York City is trying to get about 350 people who lost their homes to Superstorm Sandy out of hotels.

Municipal lawyers asked a judge Tuesday to allow the city to end hotel stays by Oct. 1, The New York Times reported. Those living in hotels would have the option of transferring into the homeless shelter system.

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The Federal Emergency Management Administration is ending reimbursement for hotels this month, and the city says it cannot afford to pay on its own.

Sandy, the largest Atlantic hurricane in recorded history, hit the New York-New Jersey area at the end of October. It devastated coastal areas in Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island.

Many of those still in hotels were renters who have been unable to find apartments they can afford, the Times said. Nicole Neal, who is now in a Holiday Inn in Brooklyn, told the newspaper she and her teenage son had been homeless for more than two years before finding an apartment in Far Rockaway, only to lose it to Sandy.

"I'm not going to no more shelters -- I've been there and done that," she said, weeping. "I don't know what I'm going to do. I don't want to think about it."

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