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Gov. Cuomo Signs Bill To Allow Breezy Point Residents To Rebuild Faster

Word Of Signing Came As Assemblyman Goldfeder Held News Conference
Assemblyman Phil Golfeder in Breezy Point, calling on Gov. Cuomo to approve bill to lift extra permitting requirement for homeowners to rebuild, July 11, 2013. (credit: Alex Silverman/WCBS 880)

Assemblyman Phil Golfeder in Breezy Point, calling on Gov. Cuomo to approve bill to lift extra permitting requirement for homeowners to rebuild, July 11, 2013. (credit: Alex Silverman/WCBS 880)

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Superstorm Sandy

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Some displaced residents who’ve wanted to rebuild after superstorm Sandy have run into roadblocks at every turn.

For some who lost everything in Breezy Point, Queens, one obstacle is out of the way.

Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder held a rally Thursday, urging the Gov. Andrew Cuomo to sign the “Breezy Point” bill he drafted and allow residents to expedite the process to rebuild their homes.

Cuomo did just that while the event was happening.

“And I know that we all joined here to urge the governor to sign it. I’m proud to report that the governor has signed it this afternoon,” Goldfeder told the crowd.

More than eight months after the Oct. 29 storm, little has changed in the fire zone where 130 homes burned to the ground as Sandy roared ashore.

“I cry every time I come,” Breezy Point resident Regina Hagerty told WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman. “My home was 700 square feet. The happiest of times.”

Breezy Point more than eight months after Sandy, July 11, 2013. (credit: Alex Silverman/WCBS 880)

Breezy Point more than eight months after Sandy, July 11, 2013. (credit: Alex Silverman/WCBS 880)

Since the homes are separated by footpaths rather than streets, the state required special approval to build.

Hagerty said regardless, she never thought twice about wanting to rebuild.

“Oh not at all, but we couldn’t if we had to wait another summer,” she told Silverman.

Goldfeder’s bill cuts that red tape for a year.

“Before today, Breezy Point residents faced the prospect of waiting up to a year for approval to rebuild homes devastated during Superstorm Sandy,” Cuomo said in a statement. “Signing this law cuts through unnecessary bureaucratic red tape, giving these New Yorkers an easier way forward as they continue to restore their homes and neighborhood.”

“Today, we say we’re ready to rebuild,” the assemblyman said.

“All’s well that ends well. Thank you, Gov. Cuomo. Your parents would be proud of you,” Hagerty said.

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