Queens lawmakers pass legislation to extend work permits in Breezy Point

Breezy Point residents are still rebuilding from the devastation of Superstorm Sandy and new legislation was passed to help them navigate the city’s red tape. (Photo courtesy of Sullivan & Galleshaw)

When Superstorm Sandy smashed into the Rockaway Peninsula nearly nine years ago, more than 300 homes and businesses were destroyed by flooding and fire in Breezy Point. The rebuilding continues to this day.

State Senator Joseph Addabbo Jr. and Assemblywoman Stacey Pheffer Amato passed legislation in both chambers that would allow residents of the oceanfront enclave to continue rebuilding their homes without additional delays brought about by the city application and review process.

“It’s hard to believe that in 2021 we are passing another extension so that Breezy Point homeowners are guaranteed another two years to rebuild with relief from red tape,” Addabbo said. “I will continue working with Breezy Point neighborhoods until they are able to rebuild and return to living in structurally sound homes. The need to introduce and pass an extender bill shows the magnitude of the devastation Sandy brought to our constituents in Breezy Point.”

The devastation of the private bungalow community, wedged between the Atlantic Ocean and Jamaica Bay, was seen around the world following the storm in October 2012 and thousands of residents were subjected to delays under the Rapid Repair, Build it Back and other programs at the city level.

“Our community was uprooted by Hurricane Sandy, and we are still feeling those effects and working to rebuild nine years later,” Pheffer Amato said. “I am thankful to Senator Addabbo and the residents of Breezy Point for their advocacy to help make government work for their community. We will not stop until all our residents can fully come home again.”

The measure will now head the desk of Governor Andrew Cuomo who is expected to sign the Breezy Point work permit extension measure into law.

“With the passage of this legislation, we are helping the people of Breezy Point continue to move forward and succeed in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, while sparing them additional frustration and expense in dealing with bureaucratic red tape,” Addabbo said.