Volume 20, Number 35 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | January 12 - 18, 2010
Gillibrand and Nadler clarify
Now that the James R. Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act has been signed into law, thousands of people are looking to their local representatives for guidance. On Monday representatives from U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s office showed up to the Community Board 1 W.T.C. Redevelopment Committee meeting to discuss the bill. Unfortunately, they provided misinformation that sparked outrage amongst the committee members.
A constituent liaison from Gillibrand’s Manhattan office told the committee members that only first responders would be covered under the portion of the bill that reopened the Victims Compensation Act. A total of 2.5 billion was allotted so people with 9/11 related illnesses could be compensated. But on Monday, the aide from Gillibrand’s office told the committee that the fund was only for first responders.
“The information presented at the meeting was not accurate. The fund is open to anyone who has a legitimate claim to some sort of World Trade Center related illness,” said Ilan Kayatsky, a spokesperson for Congressman Jerrold Nadler, one of the bill’s sponsors in the House of Representatives.
To clarify any misunderstanding, on Tuesday Glen Caplin, a spokesperson for Senator Gillibrand said, “Senator Gillibrand and her colleagues successfully fought to ensure that all of the community residents and first responders who suffer from 9/11-related diseases are eligible for critical compensation and health coverage.”
Extra prep this time around
New York City, following the blizzard that brought the city to a standstill two weeks ago, took extensive measures to prepare for the latest torrent of snow that hit the area Tuesday night.
Meteorologists predicted between five to nine inches of snow while city officials heightened their projections to fourteen inches. The Office of Emergency Management cautioned New Yorkers against driving during the storm and warned that parked cars in the way of snowploughs would be towed.
Mayor Bloomberg announced on Tuesday that 365 salt spreaders and 1,700 snowplows would be administered throughout the City.
The Metropolitan Transit Authority sent out extra employees to protect equipment and clear snow. Trains and buses are expected to run on a delayed schedule.
The Bloomberg administration has faced criticism for its response to the last blizzard. The City Council held a Joint Oversight Hearing on the City’s response to the last snowstorm, prompting the Bloomberg administration to form a 15-Point Action Plan on Tuesday to prevent future problems.
Some follies the City Council addressed were its belief that the City failed to declare a snow emergency, inefficiently allocated its resources and poorly communicated the issue to the public.