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Astorino: Con Ed Has Not Diverted Resources Away from Westchester

The County Executive toured Westchester by helicopter Wednesday.

From Westchester County: Westchester County Executive Robert P. Astorino joined Gov. Cuomo and Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand Wed. on a helicopter tour of Westchester and New York City to continue to assess the damage inflicted by Hurricane Sandy.

The regional flyover included a bird’s-eye view of Westchester County, where substantial storm damage and power outages were caused by Sandy’s ferocious winds.  The federal officials saw flood-damaged areas along the Long Island Sound and communities littered with fallen trees.

“The devastation is widespread, especially on Long Island and in Breezy Point, Queens,” Astorino said after the helicopter tour. “While other communities suffered more substantial flood damage, Westchester was hardest hit by downed trees that are blocking hundreds of streets in our county.”

Astorino has spoken personally with Con Edison CEO Kevin Burke and NYSEG CEO Mark Lynch about the recovery effort that is underway in Westchester.

 “Our biggest priority is working with Con Edison and NYSEG to get power restored and to assist our municipalities in removing the fallen trees,” Astorino said.

Astorino also said he received assurances that Westchester is getting a full complement of resources from the utilities.

“We have been assured that Con Edison is not diverting any resources from Westchester to New York City or other parts of the region. We will hold the company to its promise,” he said.  

Con Edison and NYSEG officials told Astorino that critical substations and transmission lines were damaged by the storm. Repairs to those must be completed in order to permit Westchester homes and businesses to have power restored.

An immediate priority, Astorino said, had been getting power restored to several hospitals, more than a dozen nursing homes, and other critical-care facilities that were operating on generators.

Con Edison reported that about 176,000 customers were without power on Wednesday – down from about 183,000 a day earlier. NYSEG reported 31,555 customers without power in the county – a drop of a few hundred from the day before.

Astorino also met with FEMA officials on Wednesday to begin the effort to obtain federal reimbursement for the costs of the storm. He said the county is coordinating the effort to document the costs of the storm to the county and its municipalities.

In order to qualify for FEMA funding, Westchester must document about $3.2 million in storm damage.   New York State requires about $25 million in damages.

“There’s no doubt we will be able to meet that threshold for a disaster declaration,” Astorino said. “We are working with our municipal partners to assemble the information we need.”

Astorino noted that the county’s Emergency Operations Center was still fully activated around-the-clock to assist communities trying to recover from the storm. Daily conference calls with all municipalities continue to be held to share information and determine what resources each community needs.

The county executive urged parents to exercise common sense and caution this Halloween night, saying some neighborhoods might have too many hazards to ensure their children’s safety.

See www.westchestergov.com for updated developments.

dita von struedel van trappyodel November 01, 2012 at 02:15 PM
There was not a single Con Ed crew working last evening in Rye, not one. This is complete BS. Crews are in New York City not here in Westchester.
Doug Kreeger November 01, 2012 at 02:42 PM
Con Ed site is frozen when you try and check one's specific house by phone number. Map is clearly inaccurate.
Doug Kreeger November 01, 2012 at 02:57 PM
How about people post what they know about their address and neighborhood? As far as is known, no electricity near Rye Boat Basin.
Lisa Ramos November 01, 2012 at 03:22 PM
I have been without power since Sunday night! It's been five days without light, heat, electricity and hot water. I really hope they get our power back on today :( ..
dita von struedel van trappyodel November 01, 2012 at 03:30 PM
Lisa - in order for you to get power back Con Ed has to actually get crews out to fix the problems. Unfortunately NYC seems to be more important now - this may or may not be true but to mislead us by saying this isn't the case is criminal.
L j g November 01, 2012 at 03:49 PM
NoCon Ed power no Cablevision phone or Internet or tv since Sunday 6 pm Stratton Drive, lincoln rise development in Purchase. Please advise.
Lisa D November 01, 2012 at 05:26 PM
On Tuesday 10/30 I contacted Con Edison and was told that priority is given to the more populated regions that have lost power, then they go from there. The next day a different rep denied those claims although it is clearly stated in the FAQs on the website. In Yonkers between Yonkers Ave and Bronx River Road we have outages in building complexes and businesses. However some of our neigbors are with full power. There is a electric pole hanging over the Bronx River Road and obvious down wires that have been left unnoticed. No heat, hot water or electricity and Con Ed is boosting about restoring power to Manhattan. I guess we will stay on the lower priority list as "Pending". Outrageous and cruel.
Jacine November 01, 2012 at 05:35 PM
Power has been out since 6pm Monday here in Rye Brook. Cell service has been horrible too. I've not seen a single ConEd truck here or in Eastchester all week, so can't help but believe the crews are in NYC as @smellypants suspects. When we called ConEd yesterday they said 10 more days. It's disappointing to say the least. It's too late for dry ice. They can shove it.
10580 November 01, 2012 at 05:36 PM
How are we to believe this? I sure hope there is an audit that can shine some light on ConEd's sudden disappearance from Westchester County's streets. Cuomo, Gillibrand and Schumer have spent enough time touring damage in the city and on Long Island. I understand they want to be in the national spotlight, but they have a duty to the rest of the state as well.
Jim Fitzgerald November 01, 2012 at 06:13 PM
Without power since monday at 6 pm...not a single CON ED truck in site. I had to call the fire department in White Plains to deal with downed live wires on my sidewalk with Trick or Treaters walking over them!!!
John Moschetti November 02, 2012 at 04:00 PM
I drove around for three days and have not saw one Con Ed crew. Where is the mayor French? Why is Rye a staging area; if we are going to be ignored.
pissedoff November 02, 2012 at 04:19 PM
saw convoy of ConEd trucks going out from Rye Playland at 9:00am this morning. working overtime! saw bunch of ConEd trucks parked in Armonk, where I work, drinking coffee and eating donuts at 10:30am, raking up on overtime.
michael November 02, 2012 at 08:53 PM
seriously....? while happy for the lucky ones who have restored power how can we belive that when the numbers are so skewed. while it is hard to keep track, per con ed website here are the current total outages and the starting ones: manhattan - start was 250k and now is 226k with the majority scheduled for today queens - start was 108k and now is 84k brooklyn - start was 87k and now 35k staten island - start was 109k and now 54k bronx - start was 45k and now 31k westchester - start was 150k and now 140k
Nummy November 03, 2012 at 01:16 AM
"The number of New York City fatalities from Hurricane Sandy jumped to 38 on Thursday, including two young boys who were swept from the arms of their mother on Staten Island and found dead at the swampy end of a street, the police said." Throw an extra blanket on and thank your god you still have a place to live and your love one's
Nummy November 03, 2012 at 01:18 AM
"The number of New York City fatalities from Hurricane Sandy jumped to 38 on Thursday, including two young boys who were swept from the arms of their mother on Staten Island and found dead at the swampy end of a street, the police said." Throw an extra blanket on and thank your god you still have a place to live and your love one's
Nummy November 03, 2012 at 01:23 AM
How about we pray for one with no homes left and the one's that lost loved one's
IR November 03, 2012 at 03:40 PM
Total BS. Just ONE ConEd truck for Scarsdale and 2 trucks for all of Greenburgh. HUNDREDS of trucks sitting around Rye Playland parking lot.
Ruthmarie Hicks November 09, 2012 at 12:27 AM
According PG&E - their trucks WERE diverted from Westchester to NYC....How does Astorino explain this link? http://www.pgecurrents.com/2012/11/01/pg-work-to-begin-friday/

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