Tag Archives: Sandy Hotel Program

Red Cross donates $1M to extend hotel program for Sandy victims

| mhayes@queenscourier.com

An anonymous donor has funded the almost-terminated Hotel Program, thereby allowing families displaced by Sandy to be housed past the original end date.

The donor, later revealed as the Red Cross, donated $1 million to the city program, which was previously funded by FEMA. That federal aid was set to stop on September 30.

“Hundreds of Sandy victims remain in hotels as they repair their homes or transition into new ones,” said Councilmember Donovan Richards, who fought against the termination of the program.

He said the end of the FEMA funding was “pushing these families into the homeless system.”

The Department of Homeless Services created the Hotel Program shortly after the storm left hundreds of residents on the streets. City homeless shelters were without any additional room, and so various hotels took in the storm victims.

Originally, the program was set to stop by May 31. The decision was taken to court, and federal funding was extended through September. The Red Cross stepped in on October 3 with its own donation.

“Today was almost the day hundreds of Sandy victims ended up on the street, or back in their mold-filled homes,” Richards said after receiving the donation. “This money gives our friends and neighbors the grace period they need to avoid homelessness.”

Over 1,000 households participated in the Hotel Program since Sandy, which cost more than $70.5 million, according to court documents. As of mid-September, 179 households remain in the program.

Since FEMA could no longer provide aid, the cost would have been transferred onto the city, which does not have a place in its budget for the program, according to court documents.

“Although this money will not extend the program forever, this will aid every day New Yorkers who are in the process of transitioning into new homes,” Richards said.



Queens’ Morning Roundup

| ctumola@queenscourier.com

morning roundup


Thursday: Overcast in the morning, then partly cloudy. High of 77. Winds from the NNE at 5 to 10 mph shifting to the WSW in the afternoon. Thursday night: Partly cloudy. Low of 66. Winds less than 5 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Bridging the Gap

The artistic world of the borough of Queens is alive and well, and to prove it LaGuardia Community College is hosting an exhibition comprising the diverse and rich works of 24 Queens artists. The exhibition, which is free and open to the public, is running through November 20. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Southwest fires captain in LaGuardia nose collapse landing

Southwest Airlines has fired the captain of a plane that landed so hard at New York’s LaGuardia airport that its nose gear collapsed. Read more: AP

Rally held for paralyzed biker in SUV Henry Hudson Parkway chase

Scores of bikers gathered at the hospital where one of their own is paralyzed after a violent confrontation and attack on a family that was surrounded and scared for their lives. Read more: ABC New York

NYC Sandy refugees say they need hotel program

New Yorkers who are still homeless a year after Sandy say they need more time to find shelter before the city evicts them from hotel rooms. Read more: NBC New York

Key deadline to apply for 9/11 fund

A key deadline to apply for the federal compensation fund for people with illnesses that might be related to toxic fallout from the Sept. 11 attacks is Thursday. Read more: Fox New York/AP

Best selling author Tom Clancy dead at 66

Tom Clancy, whose high-tech, Cold War thrillers such as “The Hunt for Red October” and “Patriot Games” made him the most widely read and influential military novelist of his time, has died. Read more: CBS New York

Sandy families out of hotel program

| mhayes@queenscourier.com

Displaced families whose homes were destroyed by Sandy still remain housed in hotels thanks to the city’s Hotel Program. This temporary housing, however, is coming to an end next Friday, October 4, according to a city official.

The city’s Department of Homeless Services initiated a Hotel Program that provided evacuees with housing in the interim of receiving federal recovery funds and replacing what was lost. To date, 1,313 households participated in the Hotel Program, costing over $70.5 million, according to court documents.

As of mid-September, 179 households remain in the program. Seventy-six of those are linked to a permanent housing program, five are waiting for repairs on their own homes, 94 are working with the Temporary Disaster Assistance Program (TDAP) and four no longer receive DHS payments.

The program’s funding was provided by FEMAbecause the city “does not have a budget to support the Hotel Program,” said the papers.

Originally, the program was set to stop by May 31. The decision was taken to court, and the initiative was extended to Monday, September 30, the date that FEMA funding will end. Program participants should be out that following Friday.

“For over ten months, the city has dedicated tremendous effort and resources to more than 3,000 individuals displaced by Sandy. As the court has recognized, the city cannot afford to single-handedly continue this program in the absence of FEMA funding,” said Michael Cardozo of the city Corporation Counsel. “All participating households without an exit plan may access DHS shelter, where social services staff will continue to work closely with the remaining households to identify suitable housing options.”

Court documents stated to continue the Hotel Program it would transfer the “financial burden” onto the city which “does not have a budgeted source of funds to operate” the initiative.