News

FEMA Chief: Most Sandy Victims Might Not Notice Sequester

A home in the Oakwood Beach section of Staten Island damaged by superstorm Sandy - Feb. 5, 2013 (credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

A home in the Oakwood Beach section of Staten Island damaged by superstorm Sandy – Feb. 5, 2013 (credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - The sequester means about a billion dollars will be slashed from the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s disaster relief fund, but Administrator Craig Fugate says the average Sandy victim might not notice.

“I think from the standpoint of the immediate response of the things we were doing at Hurricane Sandy, people aren’t gonna see any impacts,” Fugate said Friday on Staten Island.

He said the concern is with the larger, more long-term projects which could feel the effects by late summer.

“Permanent work could be delayed,” he said. “We may have to stop anything that hadn’t already begun.”

He said FEMA needs keep enough money in reserve.

“We can’t spend that fund down to zero before we put in a stop on permanent work. We have to be able to continue emergency work and we have to be able to respond to the next disaster,” he said.

Fugate said FEMA will work the hardest to keep intact aid to individual homeowners.