Important Government Information

NYC Build it Back8559939668_4fd8b42a6c_o
On Monday, June 3rd, Mayor Bloomberg announced the opening of registration for the NYC Build it Back program, New York City’s program to assist homeowners, landlords, and tenants in the five boroughs whose homes and properties were damaged by Hurricane Sandy. NYC Build It Back provides several pathways to help affected residents return to permanent, sustainable housing by addressing unmet housing recovery needs in several categories.

Check out the NYC Build it Back website for more information:

NYC Build it Back began holding its Option Review Meetings with numerous registrants. Click here to read more about applicant priorities and learn how to estimate your NYC Build it Back priority. At these Option Review Meetings, homeowners will learn of their preliminary Award decision, have the opportunity to review their application entirely, and learn about the construction process in the Repair and Rebuild pathways. For questions or concerns, call 212-615-8329 or write to

Below are three links that provide the current status updates about the “Build It Back Program”. It is a comprehensive overview about what the program offers, the current status, and eligibility.

BIB update 1
BIB update 2
BIB update 3

SIRR Report
The Special Initiative for Rebuilding and Resiliency has released its report on resiliency measures
for disaster-prone areas of NYC. Read the full report here:
Chapter 15 is on the East and South shores of Staten Island.

CALL FEMA at 800-621-3362
Anyone affected by Sandy (homeowners, renters, and businesses) can apply for federal disaster assistance. Register at or by calling FEMA at 800-621-3362. Non-English and non-Spanish speakers may call 866-333-1796 for translation services in 18 languages.

The deadline to register with FEMA has passed, but do not hesitate to call if you have questions about your case.

Recovery Loans through Small Business Administration (SBA)
Apply for a low interest disaster loan for Hurricane Sandy damages through the online Electronic Loan Application (ELA) program. For more info, call the SBA Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339) for the deaf and hard-of-hearing). Visit to apply online.

Disaster Unemployment Assistance
The Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) program provides unemployment benefits and re-employment services to individuals who have become unemployed because of major disasters. Benefits begin with the date the individual was unemployed due to the disaster incident and can extend up to 26 weeks after the Presidential declaration date.

Residents who have sustained losses can begin applying for assistance by registering online at or by calling 1-800-621-3362.

Federal Flooding Recovery Resources provides a list of actions to take to begin clean up and instructions for what to do when filing an insurance claim.

Governor Cuomo’s Disaster Homeownership Repair and Rebuilding Fund
This is a grant and does not require repayment. The grant can provide up to an additional $10,000 for survivors who have already qualified for FEMA Housing Assistance and received the Max Grant of $31,900, and the FEMA award did not cover the full cost of making essential repairs. This funding cannot duplicate assistance received from other governmental agencies or insurances. Residents will be automatically referred to this program.

Hotline: 855-697-7263.

Curious about how federal money on Sandy aid will be spent in NYC? Read the plan for spending the first 1.77 billion here:

Click here to learn about the assistance the City is providing to renters struggling to find an affordable new rental unit after Sandy:

Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) for NYC Released 
FEMA has released the Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) for New York City. FIRMs identify areas that are at risk of flooding, and are not to be confused with New York City’s hurricane evacuation zones. To access FEMA’s Preliminary FIRMs for New York City, clichere.

For more information about these updates and flood maps, click here.

USDA Brings Additional Relief to Landowners Affected by Hurricane Sandy
(Second Round of Easement Applications to be accepted in 2014)
To understand how this might effect you; Click the link below

Important FEMA Information for the end of 2013
Below are 2013’s end-of-year updates of the Recovery Resources and Disaster Grants documents. We have included in the Recovery Resources a special section comprising (1) a November 2012 backgrounder on Advisory Base Flood Elevations (ABFEs) and (2) Frequently Asked Questions regarding the Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Maps (PFIRMs) for NYC that FEMA recently released for review.

NY Disaster Grants Resources Guide 2013v15

New York Rising Year End Report
Governor Cuomo released a final 2013 New York Rising report last month,
documenting State investments in commuter transit, energy infrastructure
and utility systems, and storm recovery and rebuilding.
Click here to read and download the document