You are reading

Queens Council Member Pushes for Con Edison Accountability Measures After Tropical Storm

Downed trees and power lines at 172 Street, between 33rd and 35th Avenues, in North Flushing on Aug. 10 (Courtesy of Council Member Paul Vallone’s office)

Sept. 15, 2020 By Allie Griffin

A Northeast Queens council member is pushing for accountability from Con Edison after the company took a week to restore power to several Queens neighborhoods in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Isaias last month.

Council Member Paul Vallone introduced two resolutions at a City Council hearing on the company’s response to the storm Monday.

Vallone, in one resolution, is calling on Con Edison to have a dedicated team of employees and resources that focus on restoring the power on a borough by borough basis after a black out.

The company took significantly longer to restore power to households in Queens than the other boroughs after Tropical Storm Isaias, he said.

The Aug. 4 storm left 46,000 households in Queens without power by 10 a.m. the next day— the most of the five boroughs. In the first 48 hours after the storm, Con Edison had only restored 59 percent of outages in Queens versus 89 percent in Brooklyn and 81 percent on Staten Island..

The varied response and delay continued over the course of the week.

“After Storm Isaias and the ensuing slow outer-borough response, it’s more apparent than ever that we need accountability and reform,” Vallone said.

“Con Edison’s failure to quickly restore power to tens of thousands of Queens residents in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Isaias meant that the borough hardest hit by COVID-19 also became the hardest hit by this weather event.”

He also introduced a resolution calling on the state legislature to pass a law requiring Con Edison to cover the costs of wires damaged by a storm that run from private homes to utility poles — which is currently the responsibility of homeowners.

The majority of the power lines in Queens are above-ground, making the borough’s power supply vulnerable when trees fall down. In Manhattan, there are no overhead lines

The president of Con Edison, Tim Cawley, testified at the City Council hearing.

He said the August storm caused the second-most outages in Con Edison’s history, only behind Superstorm Sandy in 2012.

“This damage was so severe that we were required to entirely rebuild sections of our system rather than just repair them,” he said in explaining the outages.

Con Edison didn’t immediately return a request for comment.

The City Council passes resolutions on state and federal issues that affect New York City. Resolutions express the recommendations and opinions of the city, which can influence state and federal legislation — but do not create new law.

A tree in Sunnyside destroyed by Tropical Storm Isaias (Photo: Queens Post)

email the author: news@queenspost.com
No comments yet

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

Brooklyn man who was cleared in the murder of 14-year-old girl, indicted for attempted murder of teen in Middle Village last July: DA

A Brooklyn man who had a murder conviction vacated by the Queens District Attorney’s Office in November 2022 was indicted in connection to a fatal shooting in Middle Village.

Shamel Capers, 24, of Herzl Street, was arraigned Tuesday in Queens Supreme Court on an indictment charging him with attempted murder and Dante Hunter, 25, of Mott Avenue in Far Rockaway, was arraigned Monday on an indictment charging with murder and other crimes in the fatal shooting of 19-year-old Joshua Taylor in Middle Village last July.

Construction workers rescued from trench collapse at South Ozone Park home Monday morning: FDNY

The FDNY rescued two construction workers who were injured during a trench collapse at a home in South Ozone Park Monday morning.

Multiple units, including Squad 288 from Maspeth and Engine 302 in Jamaica, began arriving on the scene minutes after receiving a call just after 11:36 a.m. of workers trapped in the collapse of a retaining wall at 133-28 150th St. Firefighters discovered the two men pinned at the knees from dirt and debris in a collapsed 20-by-40-foot section. A neighbor who witnessed the scene said other construction workers came to the aid of the two before the FDNY arrived on the scene.

John Adams HS assistant principal busted in alleged sexual abuse of 15-year-old student: NYPD

An administrator at John Adams High School in Ozone Park was arrested on campus Wednesday for allegedly stroking the inner thigh of a 15-year-old student on Monday and then showing pornographic images of himself to her the following day.

Police from the 106th Precinct in Ozone Park responded to the scene after the student reported the incident to another John Adams High School administrator. Michael Budhu, 52, was then taken into custody.

Five Queens startups win $20,000 each in 2024 Tech + Innovation Challenge

May. 19, 2024 By Czarinna Andres

A diverse range of businesses, including a yoga studio, an olive oil distributor, a female health care provider, a sustainable mushroom farmer, and an AI-powered physical therapy service, have been named winners of the 2024 Queens Tech + Innovation Challenge (QTIC). Each winner will receive a $20,000 grant to support their business operations.

City hosting walking tours at the new Arverne East Nature Preserve in the Rockaways on Sunday

This Sunday, May 19, the city is conducting walking tours of the newly opened Arverne East Nature Preserve in the Rockaways to showcase the 35-acre beachfront jewel developed on a formerly vacant illegal dumping ground on Beach 44th Street in Edgemere.

The tours, hosted by the Department of City Planning (DCP), NYC Parks, and the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD), will allow participants to explore the preserve’s diverse ecosystem. The large preserve is a component of the upcoming Arverne East housing development, which, when completed, will be one of the most environmentally conscious developments in the United States, achieving net zero and eliminating the need for fossil fuels on-site.

QBP Richards, advocates rally to demand Mayor Adams restore funding to City’s libraries

May. 17, 2024 By Gabriele Holtermann

A rally was held at the Queens Public Library at Forest Hills on May 16, during which Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, Queens Public Library President and CEO Dennis Walcott, union reps and library advocates called on Mayor Eric Adams to reverse the proposed $58.3 million budget cuts to the New York Public Library (NYPL), the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL), and the Queens Public Library (QBL) for Fiscal Year 2025, which begins on July 1, 2024.