Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Legislators Call On Governor Paterson And Mayor Bloomberg To Use Stimulus Money To End Flooding In Northeastern Queens

Assemblyman Rory I. Lancman, Congressman Anthony Weiner, State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky and Councilman James Gennaro called on Governor David Paterson and Mayor Michael Bloomberg to use New York's share of federal stimulus funds to improve the sewage and drainage infrastructure in Northeast Queens, in order to put an end to basement and roadway sewage and rainwater flooding that has plagued the area for years. The elected officials issued their demands at the Utopia Jewish Center, whose ballroom was flooded in 2008.

"For years my constituents have waited for the City to put a stop to the flooding in this area. With the federal stimulus package New York finally has the resources to solve this problem once and for all. It is up to Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Paterson to put those stimulus dollars to good use by investing them in sewage and drainage projects here and show that they have not forgotten about Queens," said Assemblyman Lancman.

"Queens residents expect answers not excuses when it comes to ending the flooding problems. Some catch basins in Queens were designed a generation-and-a-half ago. Stimulus money should be used to solve the area's sewage infrastructure and free up the strain on the City," said Congressman Weiner.

Assemblyman Rory I. Lancman, Congressman Anthony Weiner, State Senator Toby Ann Stavisky and Councilman James Gennaro call on Governor Paterson and Mayor Bloomberg to use stimulus money to end flooding in Northeastern Queens.

"We anticipate New York State will receive approximately $25 billion in federal stimulus money. Part of this funding should be used to mitigate the flooding problems, which are familiar to anyone who lives in Fresh Meadows, which can turn into a veritable swimming pool during an intense downpour.

We are calling today on Gov. David Paterson and Mayor Michael Bloomberg to do what is right and fair, and earmark some of the stimulus package funds for this area so that the storm sewer infrastructure can be upgraded to a level appropriate for the community's needs," said Senator Stavisky.

"Just the other day the Bloomberg Administration warned of severe flooding that will hit New York City in years to come due to climate change. The residents of this part of Queens don't need a fancy report to know this; they already scoop buckets of flood water out of their basements every time it rains. If we don't use federal stimulus funds to bail them out and fix this problem for good, these folks will be bailing out their basements forever. Let's get this done now!" said Councilman Gennaro, who chairs the City Council's Environmental Protection Committee.