At Request of Puerto Rico, New York State to Send Emergency Response Personnel and Resources Including Donated Food and Water
State Emergency Operations Center Team Will Assist Local Governments in Coordinating Multi-Agency Response and Recovery Activities on the Island
Deployments Follow New York State Delegation Arriving in Puerto Rico to Assist and Assess Relief Efforts
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced New York State is deploying additional resources to Puerto Rico, including a multi-agency team of emergency response personnel and donated food and water supplies, as the U.S. Territory continues to recover from the catastrophic effects of Hurricane Fiona. At the request of Puerto Rico, New York State is sending an Emergency Operations Center support team to assist with incident management for hurricane response and recovery operations involving multiple State agencies. The Emergency Operations Center Support Team will assist with management, direction, control, and coordination of response and recovery actions among all levels of government involved in the response. Earlier this week, Governor Hochul announced that members of her administration departed for Puerto Rico as part of a New York State delegation to assist and assess Hurricane Fiona relief efforts.
"New Yorkers are always there for others in times of need and we are proud to support Puerto Rico's request for an emergency operations team to support incident management efforts on the ground," Governor Hochul said. "We stand with everyone impacted by Hurricane Fiona and will continue to provide Governor Pierluisi and the people of Puerto Rico with whatever assistance is needed so they can properly recover."
The 16 team members are from the following agencies: Department of Environmental Conservation (5); Department of Transportation (3); Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services' Office of Emergency Management (2); Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services' Office of Fire Prevention and Control (4); Office for People With Developmental Disabilities (1); Department of Agriculture & Markets (1).
For those impacted by the storm in Puerto Rico, Feeding New York State has donated approximately 37,000 pounds of mixed fresh produce, including cabbage, squash, onions, carrots, and potatoes. The donation includes all produce, packing and shipping costs. In total, there are 1,680 23-pound boxes of food being donated. Liberty Coca-Cola Beverages has donated 4,400 pounds of water. All donations are going to the Banco de Alimentos de Puerto Rico (Food Bank of Puerto Rico) to be distributed across Puerto Rico.
Secretary of State Robert J. Rodriguez said, "Seeing the damage first-hand underscores the critical need for resources in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Fiona ripped through the island. As shipments of food and other resources continue to arrive from New York State, it's clear Governor Hochul knows the true meaning of neighbors helping neighbors."
Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner Jackie Bray said, "Governor Hochul is committed to making sure our partners in Puerto Rico have everything they need to respond and recover from this storm. We are proud to be able to send staff to support our counterparts' efforts in Puerto Rico and will continue to support their response as long as needed."
Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said, "New York is once again committed to helping the citizens of Puerto Rico recover from the aftermath of another devastating Hurricane. I commend Governor Hochul and all of our partners for sending a resounding message that when Puerto Rico is in need, New York will always respond and stand firm in solidarity with the people of Puerto Rico to help them recover and rebuild their island."
Department of Transportation Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez said, "Governor Hochul, by her words and actions, is demonstrating New York's commitment to assisting our friends and neighbors in Puerto Rico to recover from the devastating aftermath of Hurricane Fiona. The State Department of Transportation is sending a well qualified team to Puerto Rico, one that is ready to collaborate with all levels of government to assist with recovery efforts and get the job done."
Department of Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, "New York has long valued our collaboration and friendship with Puerto Rico as we have worked to grow our partnership in trade. Thanks to Governor Hochul's leadership, we are proud to step forward and lend a helping hand during their time of need with a donation of 37,000 pounds of fresh produce, and by sending some of our best team members to help families and key industries, including the agricultural industry, as they recover and rebuild. "
Office for People With Developmental Disabilities Commissioner Kerri Neifeld said, "OPWDD stands ready to answer Governor Hochul's call to help this storm-ravaged island start on the path to recovery. As an agency, we will continue to support this effort for as long as our presence is needed."
Liberty Coca-Cola Beverages Co-owner and Co-CEO Paul Mulligan said, "At Liberty Coca-Cola Beverages, we value supporting our communities - especially in times of need — and we are committed to doing our part when those communities need us. Puerto Rico is an important part of our Liberty and Coca-Cola family, and we will continue to do what we can to help the community recover. We commend Governor Hochul's efforts to provide resources for relief and assistance to those impacted by Hurricane Fiona, and we are proud to assist."
Cargo for Delta Air Lines Vice President Rob Walpole said, "One of Delta's most strongly-held core values is our commitment to the health and well-being of our communities, and we understand the critical role our services can play when disaster strikes. We commend Governor Hochul and New York State for prioritizing aid to Puerto Rico, and we stand with all of those recovering in the wake of Hurricane Fiona."
This past weekend, Governor Hochul announced that a contingent of 50 New York State Troopers were deployed to Puerto Rico to assist with relief efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Fiona.
Last week, the Governor also announced new actions to engage New York's financial services industry to support residents of Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Fiona. The Department of Financial Services issued guidance calling on New York state-chartered banks to take all reasonable steps to assist consumers and businesses affected by the hurricane including waiving ATM and late fees, increasing ATM withdrawal limits, and facilitating and expediting the transmission of funds. These actions will help ease financial burdens for the many New Yorkers seeking to support family and friends in Puerto Rico, as well as anyone in Puerto Rico with New York bank accounts.
Governor Hochul also participated in a FEMA briefing with President Biden and Governor Pierluisi and once again pledged New York's full support.
Since Hurricane Maria, New York has helped Puerto Rico secure billions of dollars in federal funding from FEMA to recover and rebuild the island's energy infrastructure, in addition to NYPA performing technical assessments of powerplants and substations on the island. In the wake of Hurricane Fiona, the worst storm to hit the island since Hurricane Maria, Governor Hochul announced New York State actions to assist Puerto Rico in relief efforts. These efforts have further strengthened New York's long-standing commitment to help Puerto Rico in its reconstruction and recovery.
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