Ida Aftermath: Joining Gov. Hochul To Assess Damage, Chart Recovery

We had been warned that Tropical Storm Ida would bring strong winds and rain to our region, but we did not anticipate anything like this -- more than 3 inches of rain in one hour, breaking the previous record set less than a week ago by Tropical Storm Henri.

Storm surges typically flood our coastal areas. Ida was unusual in that it dumped more than 8 inches of rain on Staten Island. As a result, we suffered a shocking amount of damage to homes and businesses as our storm sewers failed to handle the deluge.

I joined Gov. Kathy Hochul and several of our state and local elected officials on Friday to survey the damage in a home on White Street in the Rosebank neighborhood. The extensive water damage was typical of what many residents suffered as Ida unleashed its fury on us.

I thanked the governor for her immediate response to this emergency and for conveying our dire situation to President Biden. The governor told us that the president has promised robust federal assistance to get people back on their feet.

I believe our immediate focus must be on delivering financial assistance to homeowners and small businesses, but we must also explore what can be done to mitigate the potential damage of future storms. Storm surge is a critically important concern because we are a city with 520 miles of shoreline.

Climate change is a reality. It is imperative that we recognize that and work together to meet the challenges it poses.

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