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Village In Waiting

New Hyde Park still seeking

Sandy-related FEMA reimbursements

New Hyde Park is still awaiting Superstorm Sandy FEMA reimbursements, Mayor Robert Lofaro revealed. The village operates on a budget of about $5.8 million.

Public works superintendent Tom Gannon and village clerk Cathryn Hillmann spent numerous hours on forms and expenses for storm reimbursement. Lofaro said the fund balance is tiny and that if, say $300,000 was spent, the fund needs to be replenished quickly.

“We’re still doing some repairs, the bills are being forwarded to FEMA still,” Gannon said. “Some concrete work is still popping up here and there; some tree removals as well.”

The fiscal year ends May 31. Although this part of the budget cycle marks when New Hyde Park has the least amount of money in its treasury, Lofaro said “we’re still solvent, but the account balances have depleted very heavily from expenses due to the storm.”

“Tom Gannon and [Cathryn] Hillmann have been spending a lot of hours working on the forms and identifying the expenses,” he continued. “I understand that it’s a necessary process, but hopefully at the end of the day, we’ll be reimbursed for many expenses.”

Lofaro commended FEMA in identifying expenditures in employee time. New Hyde Park will be reimbursed for village time lost due to Sandy relief efforts.

“We’re certainly grateful for the folks at FEMA helping us out,” he said. “We’re basically waiting for the money to come in.”

Trustee Donald Barbieri is sure the funds will return soon.

“We do expect that the monies that were spent for this project that we’ve applied for will be approved and be coming back into the village treasury in the near future.”