Tag Archives: hurricane sandy

New campaign helps small businesses impacted by Sandy


| dpetrovich@queenscourier.com

Screenshot from supportnycsmallbusiness.com

In an effort to help small businesses that have been affected by Sandy, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn joined forces with the Department of Small Business Services to launch the “Support NYC Small Business” campaign.

This new promotional campaign encourages locals and tourists to shop in New York City neighborhoods that were hit hardest by Sandy, trying to get small businesses back on their feet.

Sandy impacted over 13,000 businesses, but many have reopened and several others are in the process of reopening.

In order to spread the word, this campaign highlights select businesses and their remarkable recovery stories on television, radio and bus shelters, and in print and taxis.

The campaign will also hit the web with a “Back to Business” site that includes an interactive map of open businesses. The city is urging business owners who have just reopened to add to the map, so New Yorkers can consult the map for their holiday shopping and beyond.

Yelp is a partner in this cause, featuring links to help drive New York City users to the Support NYC Small Business interactive map.

“In the height of the holiday shopping season, we need to make sure that New Yorkers, tourists and all shoppers are fully aware that many small businesses impacted by Sandy have reopened and are ready to serve customers,” said Quinn.

While some small businesses are up and running, several are still struggling to open. All businesses affected by Sandy who still need assistance can get more information by visiting www.nyc.gov/nycbusiness, calling 311, or visiting one of the city’s Restoration Centers or NYC Business Solutions Centers in any borough.

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Tuesday: Overcast in the morning, then partly cloudy. High of 48. Winds from the NW at 10 to 15 mph. Tuesday night: Overcast in the evening, then partly cloudy. Low of 34. Winds from the NNW at 5 to 10 mph.

EVENT of the DAY: 20th Annual African Diaspora International Film Festival

In the first movie, A Mother’s Love, a strong black woman’s taste for the good life does not include her husband or daughter Monica. It takes another’s love and prayers to get the mother down to earth. The second flick, Between Friends, is set in Trinidad and Tobago. Middle class youngsters go to nightclubs and share moments at the beach, but filmmaker gradually exposes the different layers of their interaction. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Sources: Man shot in Midtown was aspiring Los Angeles rapper

Police say just before 2 p.m. Monday someone walked westbound on 58th street towards Broadway and shot Brandon Lincoln Woodard, 31, at close range in the back of the head. Read more: NY1

Queens drug addict busted for killing his mother and father — one year apart — as evidence surfaces under the patents’ fingernails

They gave him his DNA. And in the end, that genetic material doomed him. Queens drug addict Gregory Cucchiara, a 290-pound behemoth with a long rap sheet and little record of achievement, murdered his mother and father in separate attacks a year apart — murders that were ultimately solved from biological evidence found under the parents’ fingernails, law enforcement authorities said. Read more New York Daily News

MTA quits countdown clocks in favor of ‘Bus Time

Time has run out for New York City bus riders hoping to rely on countdown clocks. The MTA is reportedly giving up on posting electronic message boards that show bus arrival times. Read more: ABC New York

Single rides and monthly passes to cost more in M.T.A. plan

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s board appears poised to consider a proposal that would increase base fares on subways and buses by a quarter, to $2.50, and raise the cost of a 30-day pass by $8, to $112. Read more: New York Times

Heroic ‘Operation Breezy Gut and Pump’ comes to an end

After an exhausting month of gutting, pumping and rebuilding, a heroic volunteer group suspended their Breezy Point operation on Sunday. Read more: New York Daily News

Strauss-Kahn, NYC hotel maid settle civil lawsuit over alleged assault

Dominique Strauss-Kahn and a New York hotel maid who accused the former International Monetary Fund chief of sexually assaulting her agreed on Monday to settle her civil lawsuit against him for an undisclosed sum, ending one chapter of a scandal that cost him his job and derailed his political career in France. Read more: Reuters

Legislation to reduce Sandy tax burden


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

A tax package that would help those financially impacted by Superstorm Sandy will be introduced in Congress, announced Senators Charles Schumer and Robert Menendez.

The Hurricane Sandy and National Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2012 that the New York and New Jersey U.S. senators are introducing includes deductions for storm clean up expenses, additional exceptions for those that provided free housing to displaced Sandy victims, worker retention credits for business owners who continue to pay employees even though their businesses were inoperable, the waiving of penalties for those that withdrew from their retirement plan early and other tax benefits.

“When recovering from a hammer-blow like Sandy, every bit of support helps, and this legislation will make it easier for families and small businesses affected by the storm to marshal more of their resources for recovery,” said Schumer.  “These changes to existing tax law are a common sense and simple way to help disaster victims, and a quick way to get them aid to repair their homes, to recover losses and to support their businesses.”

The legislation also helps out taxpayers that made donations to Sandy relief.

Currently, contributions to qualified charitable organizations cannot exceed 50 percent of a person’s adjusted gross income, but the legislation would remove the limit.

Read a summary of the full tax package here.

“H” train merchandise to benefit Sandy victims


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of MTA

The special subway shuttle that was set up last month on the Rockaway Peninsula after Sandy damaged the area’s transit is being honored with a limited collection of “H” line merchandise available through the New York Transit Museum store’s website.

The store, which already carries clothing and other items featuring the city’s subway lines, is selling t-shirts and sweatshirts with  a blue “H” subway logo  and “The Rockaways” or “Rockaway Shuttle” spelled out underneath, as well as magnets and pins. Additional merchandise may also be developed.

Proceeds from sales will benefit Sandy relief efforts through the Graybeards, a local nonprofit organization established in response to 9/11 and dedicated to the Rockaways community, said the MTA.

“The H Line has piqued a lot of interest in subway service in the Rockaways and, with the help of a few of our product licensees, presented us with a unique opportunity to promote the service and to provide tangible assistance to efforts to rebuild that community,” said Mark Heavey, MTA director of marketing and communications.

Currently the “H” line runs between Far Rockaway-Mott Av and Beach 90 St and connects riders to a shuttle bus providing service to the “A” train at the Howard Beach/JFK Airport stop.

According to the transit agency, the first “H” line (known as the “HH”) started running on repurposed LIRR tracks in 1956, and travelled from Euclid Avenue to either Rockaway Park or Mott Avenue in Far Rockaway. It stopped running in 1972, but in the late 70s, it came back as the “CC” train, then returned to the “HH,” and was shortened to just the “H” train in 1986. In 1994, it was again renamed as the “S” (shuttle) train.

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Wednesday: Overcast with a chance of rain in the morning, then partly cloudy. Fog early. High of 54. Breezy. Winds from the NW at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 30%. Wednesday night: Partly cloudy. Low of 34F with a windchill as low as 27. Breezy. Winds from the NNW at 10 to 20 mph.

EVENT of the DAY: Jillian Peña – The Guiding Light

The Guiding Light is a sci-fi religious ballet. It explores religiosity in the balletic body, the desire to believe in something, and the complex relationship of the individual within the group. This sci-fi religious ballet trio explores the uncanny through the multiplication and duplication of the dancers both metaphorically and actually. Starts at 8 p.m. at the Chocolate Factory in Long Island City. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Queens man Ahmed Ferhani pleads guilty to plotting to blow up a string of Manhattan synagogues

A Queens man admitted Tuesday he wanted to “create chaos” by plotting to blow up a string of Manhattan synagogues — giving Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance the first state-level terror conviction under laws passed after the 9/11 attacks. Read more: New York Daily News

Teachers’ union joins chorus of concern about formerly flooded Queens school

The teachers’ union has joined parents in raising concerns about the safety of a Queens school flooded by Sandy. Read more: NY1

Police: Man implicates himself in deadly midtown subway push

Police said Tuesday night that a suspect implicated himself in a shocking subway pushing incident in Manhattan a day earlier that cost a man his life. Read more: CBS New York

New Far Rockaway playground hit by vandal and then again by Superstorm Sandy

This little playground in Far Rockaway has had a tough first year. Before it was even open to the public, the much-needed play space near Beach 29th St. was ravaged by a heartless vandal in March. The city rebuilt it only to see it battered by Superstorm Sandy months later. Read more: New York Daily News

New York City hits Sandy victims with ‘failure to maintain’ property citation

Residents in one Queens neighborhood are crying foul after they were written up for failing to clean up the city’s own mess. It is yet another new complication in life after Superstorm Sandy. Read more: CBS New York

Fiscal cliff offers hint at more defense cuts

House Republicans’ “fiscal cliff” counteroffer to President Barack Obama hints at billions of dollars in military cuts on top of the nearly $500 billion that the White House and Congress backed last year, and even the fiercest defense hawks acknowledge that the Pentagon faces another financial hit. Read more: AP

Gov. Cuomo receives high marks for Sandy response


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Terence Cullen

In a new Siena College poll, the majority of New York State voters said they were happy with how Governor Andrew Cuomo has handled the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy.

According to the results, 67 percent felt that the governor has done an excellent or good job, 22 percent said he has done a fair job and seven percent said he’s done a poor job.

In New York City, a slightly higher percentage, 70 percent, gave Cuomo a high rating.

In an effort to help with Sandy relief,  the  governor is travelling to Washington D.C. today to lobby for about $42 billion that the state needs to recover from the storm and protect itself from the next significant weather event.

State voters were almost as pleased with how President Obama and Mayor Michael Bloomberg handled the superstorm.

Sixty-one percent said that Obama did an excellent or good job and 55 percent gave Bloomberg the same rating.

In a Quinnipiac University poll from two weeks ago, New York City voters thought that Obama did a better job than Governor Cuomo, but gave him higher marks than Bloomberg.

But in the same poll, voters also rated New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s handling of the storm and its aftermath higher than all three politicians.

The Siena poll did not ask state voters about Christie.

It did, however, ask about the utility companies, FEMA and the MTA.

The majority of voters were pleased with FEMA and the Metropolitan Transit Agency, but gave Con Edison mixed ratings.

Forty-nine percent said that Con Ed did a good or excellent job, while 29 percent said the utility did a fair job and 15 percent gave it a poor rating.

Voters were not as happy with the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA), which has received criticism on how it has responded to the storm.

Only one in six Long Islanders said LIPA did an excellent or good job with post-Sandy power problems, and 60 percent said it performed poorly.

The poll also asked about other aspects of Sandy, including how the storm affected voters—from home and business damage to school closings and power outages.

“Nearly one in seven voters suffered damage to their home, including one-quarter of downstate suburbanites. More than one-third lost their power, including more than eight in ten suburbanites.  And more than two-thirds of  New Yorkers saw their schools close for at least a day, and one-third had schools closed for at least a week,” said Siena pollster Steven Greenberg  “Not in a very long time has a natural disaster directly affected more New Yorkers than Sandy.

Additionally, the poll found that more than half of New Yorkers have made a financial contribution to a charitable organization raising money for those affected by Sandy, and 26 percent have volunteered their time.

The storm may have also forced New Yorkers to take global warming more seriously.

Because of Sandy and other significant storms from the last couple of years, 69 percent believe that they climate change is real.

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Monday: Partly cloudy. Fog early. High of 59. Winds from the NW at 5 to 10 mph. Monday night: Clear in the evening, then partly cloudy. Low of 48. Winds less than 5 mph.

EVENT of the DAY: Greater Astoria Historical Society Christmas Party

Widely regarded as one of the greatest storytellers of all time, Charles Dickens left an indelible mark on how we celebrate the holidays. Tonight the Greater Astoria Historical Society will mark the 200th anniversary of the writer’s birth and have its annual holiday party with music, fun and special raffles. Free. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Up to St. John’s University to continue case against estate of suicide dean, Cecilia Chang

The Queens district attorney will abandon his effort to get back the $1 million the late St. John’s University dean Cecilia Chang embezzled from the school — leaving the university to decide whether to continue the case against the estate of the suicide dean. Read more: New York Daily News

Cuomo to make $42B storm aid pitch to Congress

Gov. Andrew Cuomo will be in the nation’s capital to meet with members of Congress as he seeks billions of dollars in federal aid to help New York recover from Superstorm Sandy. Read more: Fox 5 New York

Work week begins with higher tolls on bridges and tunnels

The countdown was on Sunday night to the first morning rush since a new toll hike went into effect for bridges and tunnels run by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Read more: CBS New York

Development will damage Flushing Meadows’ role as marshy buffer against storm surge and coastal flooding

The borough of Queens was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy. Breezy Point, the Rockaways and other neighborhoods were completely devastated and may never be the same. We’d be foolish to think that Sandy was a once-in-a-lifetime storm. Instead, Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Irene are what we can expect more often in our future with climate change a clear and present danger. Read more: New York Daily New

Pig faces ‘big bad’ co-op

Say it oink so! Residents of a Queens co-op say the pet pig rooting around their courtyard isn’t kosher — and are determined to get the city to evict the unwelcome ungulate from the complex. Read more: New York Post

Some schools in New York, Connecticut to lengthen class time

New York and Connecticut are among five states set to announce Monday that they will add at least 300 hours of learning time to the calendar in some schools beginning next year. Read more: CBS New York

 No ‘fiscal cliff’ deal without higher rates, Geithner say

The Obama administration will entertain any Republican plans to avoid a so-called “fiscal cliff” at year’s end, but Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner says the Bush-era tax cuts for top incomes must go. Read more: CNN

 

 

 

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST 

Wednesday: Overcast. High of 43. Winds from the NNW at 10 to 15 mph. Wednesday night: Clear in the evening, then partly cloudy. Low of 34 with a windchill as low as 28. Winds from the WNW at 10 to 15 mph.

EVENT of the DAY: Aki Sasamoto: Centripetal Run

Performance artist Aki Sasamoto explores parallels between gray situations in personal lives and electromagnetic radiation that forms the universe. The show opens with Pau Atela’s pendulum mechanism, leading into Sasamoto’s movement exploration and interaction with her objects. Starts at 8 p.m. at the Chocolate Factory Theater in Long Island City. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Rockaway residents getting that sink-ing feeling

If lack of power and flood damage wasn’t enough, some Rockaway residents are getting the sinking suspicion that the ground just might literally cave in underneath them. Read more: New York Daily News

Parents raise safety concerns as school in Queens reopens early

Stephen P. Grill, the principal of a public school in Belle Harbor, Queens, strode down an auditorium aisle on Tuesday morning, past chairs that had been submerged by floodwaters from Hurricane Sandy and police tape that was blocking a back door. He stood in front of a wall obscuring a badly damaged stage. Read more: New York Times

Some Sandy victims show signs of PTSD, hospital says

Adam Funtleyder lost his first floor and his basement to flood water from Hurricane Sandy, but he also almost lost his life. Read more: NY1

Breezy break-in bust

A Breezy Point man was busted for breaking into his neighbor’s storm-damaged beach bungalow the day after Thanksgiving, cops said yesterday. Read more: New York Post

Bus slams into Long Island Home, killing 5-year-old boy, injuring at least 8 others

A 5-year-old boy was killed Tuesday night, and at least eight other people were injured, when a commuter bus plowed into a Nassau County home. Read more: CBS New York

Rock Center’s 80-Foot tree ready to shine

After two weeks of prep, The Most Famous Christmas Tree in the World is ready to get lit up. Read more: NBC New York

No one reported shot, stabbed or slashed in New York City on Monday, police sources say

No news really is good news — not a single person was reported shot, stabbed or slashed in New York City on Monday, police sources said. Read more: New York Daily News

Rice concession on Libya fails to mollify 3 in GOP

U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice told lawmakers Tuesday that her initial explanation of the deadly Sept. 11 raid in Libya was wrong, but her concession failed to mollify three Republican senators who signaled they would try to block her possible nomination to be secretary of state. Read more: AP

 

 

 

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Tuesday :Overcast with rain. High of 41. Winds from the NW at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the NNE in the afternoon. Chance of rain 80% with rainfall amounts near 0.2 in. possible. Tuesday Night: Overcast with rain. Low of 34. Winds from the North at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 80%.

EVENT of the DAY: Holiday Tree Lighting in Sunnyside/Woodside

The tree lighting is a true community celebration with local elected officials, a presentation by the Sunnyside Drum Corps, caroling with local schools and holiday cheer. Borough President Helen Marshall will light the tree and Father Brian Dowd from Queen of Angels RC Church will lead a Christmas prayer. There will also be candy canes for the children. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Queens school shut since hurricane is reopening

The New York City Education Department said on Monday that Public School/Middle School 114 in Belle Harbor, Queens, would reopen on Tuesday, three days earlier than planned, after it was flooded during Hurricane Sandy. Read more: New York Times

Queens church’s crucifix vandalized

The beloved 25-year-old crucifix at St. Leo’s Church in Corona, Queens, was vandalized at night on or after thanksgiving. Read more: Fox New York

City workers still reeling from Hurricane Sandy

The recovery from Superstorm Sandy has tested every level of city government and all ranks of city employees. Read more: New York Daily News

Nets beat Knicks in OT, take 1st Brooklyn matchup

Playing the Knicks never looked or sounded so sweet for the Nets in New Jersey. Read more: ABC New York

Top LIPA executive, trustee resign

A top LIPA executive and a LIPA trustee announced their resignations Monday as the power authority deals with criticism in their response to Sandy, NBC 4 New York has confirmed. Read more: NBC New York

Experts estimate $1.5 billion in sales on Cyber Monday

Americans clicked away for deals on Cyber Monday, which was expected to be the biggest online shopping day in history. Read more: CBS New York

Obama to meet executives, go to Pennsylvania for fiscal push

resident Barack Obama will launch a multipronged push this week to garner support for his proposals to solve U.S. fiscal problems, meeting with business executives at the White House and visiting a small business in Pennsylvania to press his case. Read more: Reuters

 

Sandy more impactful than Katrina: Cuomo


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

The same day that Mayor Bloomberg requested billions in federal aid to help the city rebuild after Superstorm Sandy, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that Sandy cost the state $32.8 billion in repair and restoration costs.

Additionally, New York will need an estimated $9.1 billion in mitigation and prevention costs, said Cuomo, for measures such as flood protection for the World Trade Center site and vulnerable road and subway tunnels, fuel supply system power generation, sewage treatment plant flood protection and secondary power supply systems for health care facilities.

To cover the approximately $42 billion in costs, the state will need supplemental federal assistance, said Cuomo.

That estimation includes approximately $5 billion in recovery needs for the MTA, 1.5 billion for utilities, 6 billion for businesses and 9.6 billion for housing.

Compared with Hurricane Katrina, about 100,000 more housing units were damaged or destroyed in Sandy and almost 250,000 more businesses were impacted, said the governor’s office. There were also approximately 1.4 million more power outages from the superstorm.

When looking at those numbers, said Cuomo, Katrina, in many ways, was not as impactful as Sandy.

 

 

Bloomberg requests Sandy aid to cover $19B in losses storm cost city


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

NYC mayor's office Flickr /Photo by Kristen Artz

In a letter sent to members of the New York State Congressional Delegation today, Mayor Michael Bloomberg asked for $9.8 billion in Federal aid to help the city rebuild after Superstorm Sandy.

That number was calculated from the estimated $19 billion cost of private and public losses to the city, minus a $5.4 billion FEMA reimbursement and $3.8 billion in private insurance.

“This funding will be needed to address the significant local expenses that have been and will be incurred, including costs that are ineligible under FEMA such as hazard mitigation, long-term housing solutions, and shoreline restoration and protection,” Bloomberg said in the letter, which was publically released on Monday, November 26.

The letter also included an outline of the estimated losses the city suffered because of Sandy (numbers are in billions):

Chart courtesy of mikebloomberg.com

1. Numbers in table may not sum due to rounding.
2. Calculated as New York City’s share of high-end overall U.S. insured loss estimates from multiple insurance and risk management companies (Eqecat, AIR Worldwide, Dowling & Partners, Hiscox, Endurance, Willis, QBE, and RMS). New York City’s share was estimated with AIR Worldwide county-level data for NYC boroughs, as a share of AIR’s total estimated U.S. losses.
3. Estimated 125% for uninsured losses (as a share of insured losses); derived from estimates of past storm data from Swiss Re’s report: “Sigma: Natural Catastrophes and Man-Made Disasters in 2011.”
4. Estimates from the New York City Office of Management and Budget and the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services.
5. Asset Losses and Emergency Spending. Includes costs of clean-up by City agencies; a more detailed breakdown was not available from individual agencies as of November 21, 2012.
6. Additional Cleanup Costs; U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
7. Estimate from Moody’s Analytics.
8. Based on the standard projected FEMA share of 75% of eligible costs for major disasters. Subject to caps on the amount of assistance per individual household. Cleanup costs are estimated at a higher 90% rate based on communications with the New York City Office of Management and Budget.
9. Assumed 50/50 split of Private Uninsured Losses between residential and commercial. All disaster-related assistance to businesses is in the form of loans, so the commercial portion is excluded from the estimated 75% FEMA reimbursement share.

Sandy cleanup to put 5,000 unemployed New Yorkers back to work


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

A $27 million dollar federal grant for New York State is expected to provide more than 5,000 unemployed New Yorkers with jobs helping with post-Sandy cleanup, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Sunday.

The funds, which are provided by a National Emergency Grant and administrated by the State Department of Labor, will go to the areas hardest hit by the superstorm.

According to the governor, the work will include cleaning and repairing damaged property and public structures, and those hired will earn approximately $15 per hour to work short and long-term projects. Workers will also receive help finding their next job.

“This funding will not only provide young people and the unemployed with the opportunity to participate in cleaning up and rebuilding communities devastated by the storm, but it will provide valuable work experience and on-the-job training that can be useful in future careers,” said Cuomo.

On November 25, Cuomo also announced that the state, together with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), are going to launch a program to  replace FEMA workers, many of which are from outside the state, with up to 700 New Yorkers. These jobs will be full-time and temporary positions.

If you are interested in applying for a job under the National Emergency Grant, contact the Department of Labor at 1-888-4-NYSDOL (1-888-469-7365) or by visiting www.labor.ny.gov/sandyjobs. You can also visit your local Disaster Recovery Center or One-Stop Career Center. You must be unemployed to be eligible.

If you are interested in applying for a job with FEMA, visit Governor Cuomo’s Jobs Express website at www.labor.ny.gov/jobs/regional.shtm.

 

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Monday: Partly cloudy. High of 46. Winds from the West at 5 to 10 mph. Monday night: Partly cloudy in the evening, then overcast with a chance of rain. Low of 36. Winds less than 5 mph. Chance of rain 50%.

EVENT of the DAY: Selections from “The Nutcracker” with the Ohman School of Ballet

Come to the Queens Library in Flushing for excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s Christmas ballet “The Nutcracker,” performed in full costume by the Ohman School of Ballet. Dances that will be performed include “Marzipan,” “The Sugarplum Fairy,” “Waltz of the Flowers,” “Mechanical Soldier” and more. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Lowlife pigs robbed kids’ banks in Breezy Point

Sandy spared their children’s piggy banks. But some heartless crook did not. A Breezy Point, Queens, family still reeling from the superstorm returned home after Thanksgiving to find their ravaged bungalow ransacked. Read more: New York Daily News

Bronx man charged in Queens woman’s death

Police have charged a Bronx man with murder in connection to the death of a 22-year-old Queens woman who was unconscious in a parked car. Read more: Wall Street Journal

Damaged vacation homes not eligible for FEMA grants

Superstorm Sandy delivered the injury. Now comes the insult. Summer home owners, common in beach communities like the Rockaways, may be financially wiped out if they didn’t spring for pricey flood insurance because FEMA provides grants only for primary residences. Read more: New York Daily News

Cyber Monday likely to be busiest online sales day

Bye-bye Black Friday. So long Small Business Saturday. Now, it’s Cyber Monday’s turn. Read more: ABC New York

FEMA approves aver $664 million for Sandy recovery in New York state

The Federal Emergency Management Agency as of Sunday had approved more than $664 million to help New York state residents recover from Superstorm Sandy. Read more: CBS New York

LIRR, PATH and ferry service added

It’s getting a little easier to get to work in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy. Read more: Fox New York

Consumers to spend less if middle-class taxes rise: White House

A White House report says that if that Congress allows taxes to go up on middle-class families, consumers will spend $200 billion less in 2013. Read more: Reuters

WATCH: Queens-Midtown Tunnel floods during Sandy


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Flickr/MTA

It took over a week for the Queens-Midtown tunnel to open to traffic after it flooded during Sandy.

On Tuesday, the MTA released a video from October 31 showing how much water flowed into it because of the superstorm. The transit agency also released photos of the flooding.

It was the first time the tunnel, which carries an average of 78,000 vehicles daily, flooded since it opened in 1940.

After dewatering its 1.6 mile tubes and making electrical repairs, it opened to bus traffic on November 6, cars on November 9 and trucks last Friday.

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Wednesday: Partly cloudy. High of 52. Winds from the NNE at 10 to 15 mph. Wednesday night: Partly cloudy in the evening, then clear. Low of 41. Winds from the NNE at 10 to 15 mph.

EVENT of the DAY: Monthly Jazz Jam at Flushing Town Hall 

Professional jazz musicians, jazz students and music educators are welcome to come jam and meet fellow musicians at this monthly drop-in event at Flushing Town Hall. Open to the general public with a $10 admission. Performers, students and members get in free. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Burglary is crime du jour post-Sandy, stats show

Some of the most cold-hearted locals saw a storm-torn Rockaway peninsula as the location for the perfect heist. Read more: New York Daily News

Giant sinkholes a problem in Queens after Sandy

First they were flooded by Hurricane Sandy and now they’re being swallowed by sinkholes. Read more: ABC New York

Queens restaurant owner to offer free Thanksgiving dinner to residents

A Queens restaurant owner is spreading some Thanksgiving cheer for residents hit by Hurricane Sandy. Read more: NY1

Police question man in ‘John Doe Duffel Bag’ Brooklyn shopkeeper killing cases

Police were questioning a man Tuesday night that they said matches the description of a man seen on surveillance video near a recent murder scene in Prospect Lefferts Gardens, WCBS 880 learned. Read more: CBS New York

Giuliani: MTA chair would make great NYC mayor

Rudy Giuliani believes Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chairman Joe Lhota would make a great New York mayor. Read more: Fox NY

PETA asks Obama to opt out of turkey pardon

It’s a White House tradition with a century and a half of history behind it, but PETA is asking the White House to skip it this year. REad more: ABC News

Amid Gaza diplomacy, bus bomb hits Tel Aviv

A bomb struck an Israeli bus near the nation’s military headquarters in Tel Aviv on Wednesday, wounding 10 people and complicating major diplomatic efforts to forge a truce between Israel and Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers. Read more: AP