LONG BEACH, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Gov. Andrew Cuomo visited Long Beach on Sunday to announce $40 million in reimbursements for Nassau County to cover losses sustained during superstorm Sandy.

Cuomo announced more than $24 million will go toward reimbursements for debris removal in Long Beach, plus an additional $16 million for Nassau County Public Works.

“Today we are delivering the first federal aid to the hardest hit areas of New York State as they continue to recover from the damage,” Cuomo said. “This money will significantly help New Yorkers rebuild communities on Long Island and throughout the impacted areas. With the arrival of more support, New York will continue to move forward and build back stronger than before.”

1010 WINS’ Gene Michaels reports

These are the first reimbursements delivered in the state since Sandy hit in late October.

“Nassau County was hit the hardest by Hurricane Sandy, and our families and communities are nowhere near a full recovery. This FEMA grant will go far in helping us to clean up and remove dangerous debris, so that we can clear our homes, roads and neighborhoods and be ready for rebuilding. I thank Governor Cuomo for his continuing commitment to Nassau County and FEMA for this important grant,” said Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano.

The reimbursement was delivered Sunday following a coordinated effort between state and federal officials.

Cuomo said more public assistance funding is anticipated to offset county costs for debris removal and disposal.

Long Beach and Nassau County will use these funds for contractor costs for construction and demolition costs, sand and vegetative debris removal as well as tree removal, reduction, hauling, disposal.

The nearly $16 million given to Nassau County by FEMA will cover 75 percent of the costs of overtime for 270 employees and the rental of heavy duty wood chippers to reduce the volume of the debris directly caused by Sandy.

At the event, Cuomo joked about how he was greeted by Mangano, 1010 WINS’ Gene Michaels reported.

“As I was walking in, he put out his hand. He said, ‘Governor, as always, good to see you. How much is the check for?” Cuomo said. “And I smiled because sometimes it is about the money, and the finances are very are very important here.”

Cuomo said this is no time for politics or partisanship.

“We need the federal government to step up and to help pay this bill,” he said.

Cuomo said Sandy was the most expensive disaster in modern history, and urged Congress to allocate all the funds that have been requested.

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