The city plans to construct at least 500 homes that were destroyed during Superstorm Sandy and issue 500 reimbursement checks by the end of the summer, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Thursday at the Staten Island Build It Back Center.
The de Blasio administration released a report on the city's response to Superstorm Sandy, including recommendations such as providing financial relief to homeowners and businesses and interacting more directly with communities throughout the rebuilding process.
Since January, the NYC Build It Back program has given award offers to nearly 4,000 homeowners. Nearly 1,000 homeowners have accepted the offers and are currently in the design process. The accepted offers bring the total amount of money allocated to Superstorm Sandy victims to roughly $40 million.
“We can’t stand idly by as red tape and bureaucratic bottlenecks prevent far too many New Yorkers from getting the relief they need. That’s why, from day one, we prioritized more efficient recovery," de Blasio said in a statement.
"And now, we’ve laid out a blueprint to provide critical financial relief to homeowners and directly engage communities in the rebuilding process—all while continuing our work to ensure a stronger and more resilient New York,” he continued.
The report announces a major revamp of recovery programs, including speeding up the process for families and businesses that are rebuilding as well as easing eligibility requirements so individuals can receive immediate relief. The city also plans to use the rebuilding and recovery process to create more job opportunities for New Yorkers and improve coordination within the city and across all levels of government.
At the end of March, the city announced that it would reallocate $100 million to homeowners whose homes were destroyed by Superstorm Sandy 17 months ago, regardless of the homeowner's income or current program prioritization.