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Friday, July 31, 2015
A friend in high places in Rockville Centre
Skelos took leading role in the South Shore’s post-Sandy recovery
Photos courtesy Senator Skelos’s office
Skelos helped with recovery efforts in East Rockaway, dropping off clothes after the storm.

In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, before the full extent of the damage had been realized, State Sen. Dean Skelos was standing at the Bay Park Sewage Treatment plant with Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano.

The plant had been hit by a nine-foot tidal surge, wiping out most of its equipment. The facility was offline, and a disaster was looming: If nothing was done, raw sewage would start backing up into the homes of thousands of Nassau County residents.

Skelos went back to his car, pulled out his phone and made some calls. It turned out that New York City had a pump that could help alleviate the problems at Bay Park. Better yet, the pump wasn’t being used.

But the city was just as ravaged by Sandy as Nassau County was, and getting the pump out during the crisis would be a tremendous feat. Nevertheless, Skelos managed to get it done. He called Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

“He understood the emergency,” Skelos recalled. “They had pumps that were needed for Bay Park that weren’t in use. They immediately arranged to bring them to Nassau County.”

That was one of the first things Skelos did in the wake of the storm, but it was not the last. As the majority leader of the Senate, it would have been easy for him to take on the role of an overseer and delegate duties to others while he sat in his office in Albany. But Skelos, a Republican from Rockville Centre, was on the ground. His district was one of the hardest-hit on Long Island, and most of his constituents were without electrical power.

His office, staffed by a total of five people, fielded 3,500 calls in the first week after the storm. Disaster relief isn’t part of Skelos’s job description, but he and his staff did what they could.

“We became a clearinghouse,” said Tom Locascio, the senator’s director of district operations, “connecting people with needs with groups that could help them.”

Comments

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furiousman

If Dean Skelos appointed a REAL ENGINEER instead of a dietician (Suzette Smookler) to the LIPA Board of Trustees, maybe LI would have been better prepared to handle Sandy. Actually many on the current LIPA Board are not qualified to oversee a major utility. They are all patronage beneficiaries, courtesy of Dean Skelos, Sheldon Silver, and Andrew Cuomo.

BTW We wouldn't be in this mess if Long Island politicians would simply stop the Patronage Mill. STOP planting unqualified individuals in important positions.

As for Bay Park, it's been a known disaster for the last 20 years! Any of Skelos' constituents can attest to that! Ask any East Rockaway resident what they think about Bay Park!

NYS and Nassau County have done nothing to fix that environmental disaster. Now with the Sandy relief money, let's see if Dean Skelos will personally oversee the repair of Bay Park!

One of the most important things Sandy has shown is LI is woefully ill-equipped to handle a severe storm and despite the tremendous amount of Tax Dollars sent to Albany every year, none of those tax dollars come back... We need to "harden" our infrastructure from natural disasters... yet Albany cares little to do so.

So I say to Senator Dean Skelos, if you really want tohelp the people of LI, stop the TAX INEQUITY and allow Nassau and Suffolk Counties to invest a portion of the Albany Tax bill here for infrastructure projects.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013 | Report this
hydtguy

Sen. Skelos only stands up when he can get some bennifit for himself. He folded like a cheep tent when Andrue Coumo decided to push anti 2nd. A. laws that will not stop one crime and disarm good law abideing voters.

Shame has a name, Skelos.

If my fellow voters have a chance the LI republicans that stabed all of us in the back will be gone next election.

Thursday, February 21, 2013 | Report this
apshap5

furiousman makes many good points. i would also question the "cozy" appointment of management at the bay park plant. The L.I Press ran a story a while back in that regard. one of the whistle blowers in that case was reassigned out of the plant. interestingly, they brought him back him back in to the plant after Sandy to deal with the mess...

So just by luck NYC happened to have the pumps on hand that were critiically needed there. And what, heaven forbid, would have been the result if the pumps were not available? What a gross failure to prepare! What a gross failure of leadership! Is not the extreme vulnerability of this plant that sits right on the canal an obvious foregone conclusion without even considering a strom the magnitude of Sandy. The Bay Park Plant remains a health disaster and an economic disaster waiting to happen. There is no more fundamental or critical issue that our lcoal politicans need to attend to. Sandy went way beyond a wake up call!

Friday, February 22, 2013 | Report this
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