Storm-damaged businesses struggle to reopen - New York News

Superstorm Sandy

Storm-damaged businesses struggle to reopen

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The Water Club restaurant on the East River and 30th Street in Manhattan looks normal on the outside. But Hurricane Sandy's storm surge ruined the electrical wiring, boilers, and wood floors inside. Restoring the restaurant will take months and millions of dollars in repairs.

On the Hudson River and 44th Street by the still-closed Intrepid museum, restaurant P.D. O'Hurley's electrical system was shorted out by flood waters. The restaurant will also be closed for repairs at least until the New Year.

Many people from the area that were made homeless by Sandy are staying in hotels and motels in other neighborhoods, and many tourists are keeping away because of bad publicity.

The bottom line is that New York City is losing tourism business along with cancellation of holiday parties.

Also, catering halls on Long Island's south shore have been hit hard.

While the Water Club will survive because the owner saved up money he can use for repairs, his 100 workers are unemployed until spring 2013.

Caterers, restaurants, and hotels in the metro area say their business is down at least 30 percent.

Rep. Carloyn Maloney said the FEMA deadline to register for loans and grants has been extended to January 28, 2012, which is important since so many businesses need time to deal with the insurance companies.

Small-business owners are hopeful the Congress will approve the $60 billion in aid President Obama has asked for the metro area.

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