Senator Jack M. Martins was among 10 Senators appointed to the New York State Senate Bi-Partisan Task Force on Hurricane Sandy Recovery. The task force was announced during a press conference held on December 10 at a warming center in Rockaway Beach after the Senators toured a neighborhood ravaged by the hurricane, which hit the region late October.
Senator Martins and Senator Charles Fuschillo were the only two Senators from Nassau County as they join Senator Lee Zeldin as the three appointees from Long Island. The task force also includes co-chairs, Senator Andrew Lanza (R-Staten Island) and Senator Malcolm Smith (D-Queens), as well as Senator Diane Savino (D-Staten Island/Brooklyn), Senator-Elect James Sanders, Jr. (D-Queens), Senator David Carlucci (D-Rockland), Senator Martin J. Golden (R-Brooklyn) and Senator Joseph Addabbo Jr.(D-Queens).
“This task force will clear the way to get our disaster response streamlined and working so our neighbors and local businesses can rebuild. We're going to listen, figure out what needs to be done and then make sure our communities have the resources they need to rebuild better than ever,” Senator Martins said.
The task force was announced by Independent Democratic Conference Leader, Senator Jeffrey D. Klein, and Republican Conference Leader, Senator Dean Skelos. It was created to play a pivotal role in developing the short and long-term plans that will help these communities get back on their feet. Each task force member represents one of New York State’s hardest hit areas and is thus uniquely qualified to pinpoint those neighborhoods and businesses that are most in need.
Senator Martins was placed on task force partly because of the reputation as a Senator who has worked well with both sides of the aisle for the good of the state and also because of his work with local governments as the Chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Local Government.
The task force includes both Republican and Democrat members of the New York State Senate who will be working together to assist in the rebuilding of communities devastated by the storm.
The task force, which will tour and hold hearings in hard hit communities across the New York metropolitan region, will be charged with:
· Identifying areas most in need of recovery assistance.
· Reviewing rebuilding and storm planning policies to remove roadblocks and ensure better storm-preparedness.
· Developing legislative solutions that will implement the forthcoming recommendations made by the NYS 2100 Commission, the NYS Respond Commission and the NYS Ready Commission – all established by Governor Cuomo in November.