NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Residents are still waiting for help three weeks after President Barack Obama visited parts of Staten Island following superstorm Sandy.
WCBS 880’s Sean Adams On The Story
Bruce Randall says President Obama was a great comfort when he stopped in front of the Randall’s flooded out cottage.
“We felt that he really was concerned, very sincere about it,” Randall told WCBS 880 reporter Sean Adams of the visit and Obama’s promise that there would be no patience for bureaucracy.
The visit put the spotlight on Staten Island. Now, Randall says they could sure use some more of that attention.
He’s in a holding pattern, waiting for a check, caught up in FEMA red tape, acting as his own middleman between a FEMA adjuster and an inspector.
“You think that this would just be an automatic process. We do have computers today, that when this is finished, this gets sent to the FEMA offices. But no, we’re told we have to physically acquire this final statement, get to a fax machine, we don’t even have electricity here, and get that over to FEMA,” he said.
“When you talk to FEMA people, you know, they try to be as helpful as possible, no question. They’re trying. I think the biggest problem is oversight. They need better coordination and I think there needs a little quicker, more immediate assistance.”
He added that many neighbors are in the same boat. They understand there’s a process, but they’re mentally and physically exhausted and they could use a little extra help.