You are reading

President Biden Visits Queens to Assess Storm Damage from Hurricane Ida

President Joseph Biden delivers remarks on 87th Street — a block hit hard by Hurricane Ida — in East Elmhurst (Screenshot via White House livestream)

Sept. 7, 2021 By Allie Griffin

President Joseph Biden visited Queens Tuesday to assess the damage from Hurricane Ida and speak to families afflicted by the destructive storm.

Biden met with local elected officials in the borough, where 11 people were killed last week when homes, businesses and streets were flooded with several feet of water.

He joined Gov. Kathy Hochul, U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer and others on an East Elmhurst block to speak to residents whose homes were filled with roughly seven feet of water last Wednesday.

“I wish every American could see and walk down this alley with me to see and talk to the people who’ve been devastated,” Biden said of the stretch of 87th Street.

“This is America, where I’m standing right now,” he added. “These are the people … who built this country and it’s about time we step up.”

Biden approved New York State’s emergency declaration late Thursday in a move that will provide federal support to the recovery effort.

He said he and the legislators standing behind him at the press conference Tuesday would ensure residents on the block and in other hard hit areas would get the help they needed.

Residents clean up after the remnants of Hurricane Ida flooded their homes on 87th Street in East Elmhurst (Darren McGee/Office of the Governor)

“My message to everyone grappling with this devastation is we’re here, we’re not going home until this gets done,” Biden said. “…We’re going to continue to shout as long as it takes to get real progress here.”

The president also spoke of the storm’s strength as a sign of the dangers of climate change. Ida slammed the five boroughs with the greatest single-hour rainfall in city history — which broke a record set less than two weeks earlier.

“Climate change poses an existential threat to our lives, to our economy and the threat is here,” Biden said. “It’s not going to get any better. The question [is] can it get worse?”

He added that the experts have warned that climate change is now at “code red.”

“The nation and the world are in peril,” Biden said. “And that’s not hyperbole. That is fact.”

Biden has authorized the federal government to provide individuals with disaster grants of up to $34,000.

Those affected by the storm can apply for federal assistance at disasterassistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-3362.

There is also federal help available for small business owners on the site. Owners can also call the city’s small business hotline at 888-727-4692.

The city has also set up an Ida recovery service center in Woodside at M.S. 125, located at 46-02 47th Ave. The center is open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and is a one-stop shop to access help from several city agencies and community-based organizations.

More information on available assistance and services can be found here.

email the author: [email protected]

One Comment

Click for Comments 

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

3 men sought for armed robbery in East Elmhurst home invasion near LaGuardia Airport: NYPD

The NYPD is looking for three men who allegedly robbed an East Elmhurst man of tens of thousands of dollars during a home invasion early Monday morning.

Police from the 115th Precinct in Jackson Heights responded to a 911 call of an armed robbery at a townhouse located at 108-09 Ditmars Blvd. near 29th Avenue just south of LaGuardia Airport.
The victim had pulled up in front of his home just before 2 a.m. when he was approached by three suspects. One of them pulled out a firearm and forced him inside the townhouse where they stole around $30,000 in cash and a safe that contained an unspecified amount of jewelry, before exiting and driving off in a silver four-door SUV, police said.

Brooklyn man charged with manslaughter, DWI, for Astoria collision that killed his wife: DA

New details have emerged in the case against a Brooklyn man who allegedly crashed into several cars in Astoria last week while driving drunk, and then drove off in the wrecked vehicle to a residential block in Maspeth four miles away with a gravely injured passenger. The passenger turned out to be his wife, who later died, and the boozed driver told investigators that the couple was being followed when the collision occurred, according to the criminal complaint.

Rey Perez, 27, of Caton Avenue in Flatbush, was arraigned on Friday in Queens Criminal Court on charges of manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter and other crimes for speeding through stop signs last Thursday morning, crashing into another vehicle and two parked cars, before speeding from the scene to Maspeth where he sought help for his wife, 29-year-old Bridget Enriquez, who later succumbed to her injuries.

Woman sought for slashing cabbie during a robbery near LaGuardia Airport: NYPD

Police are searching for a woman who attacked a cab driver in East Elmhurst during a robbery more than two weeks ago.

The incident occurred in the early morning hours of Sunday, Feb. 11 after the cabbie picked up the suspect in Manhattan. The driver told investigators that the woman initially wanted to be taken to LaGuardia Airport but instead decided to be dropped off  nearby in front of 89-00 23rd Ave. at around 2 a.m.