Hurricane Irene Cost NYC at Least $55M: Official
Hurricane Irene last month cost New York City at least $55 million for overtime, evacuation expenses and damage to public infrastructure, said Chris Gilbride, a spokesman for the Office of Emergency Management.
The preliminary estimate, with some agencies yet to report, includes partial costs to shelter 71,000 of the 270,000 residents in low-lying areas that were ordered to evacuate before the storm struck Aug. 27 and 28. About 9,500 people used the centers at the storm’s peak, city officials said at the time.
The Stafford Act, a federal program, reimburses municipalities for about 90 percent of damage to public infrastructure and costs associated with response and recovery, including overtime and emergency protective measures taken before the storm, Gilbride said.
“It will take several more weeks to determine the full extent of the city’s storm-related costs and which of those costs are eligible for federal reimbursement,” Gilbride said in an e-mail.
Irene, the first to prompt hurricane warnings in New York since 1985, made landfall over Coney Island as a tropical storm with 65 mph (104 kph) winds, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The city sustained less damage than other areas along the East Coast, where the storm killed at least 44 people and left almost 6 million homes and businesses without power, according to the U.S. Energy Department.
Private property reimbursements by insurance companies may run as high as $2.6 billion, Kinetic Analysis Corp., a firm that predicts the effects of disasters, said last month.
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