FEMA OKs Additional $28M for FDNY Equipment, Overtime

September 5, 2002 -- The Federal Emergency Management Agency said yesterday it has approved $28 million in new grants to replace New York firefighting gear destroyed Sept. 11 and to cover firefighters' overtime pay in the days after the attacks.

The grants raise to $241 million the amount of money FEMA has approved for the Fire Department for the Sept. 11 response, the agency said.

The new grants include $17 million in overtime pay that the department doled out to make sure all fire posts in the city were covered after 343 firefighters died in the attack and many more were injured.

FEMA also approved $11 million to reimburse the department for equipment lost in the attack, including hoses, lights, special thermal-imaging cameras and oxygen tanks.

Meanwhile, Mayor Bloomberg said yesterday that more than 85 percent of the relatives of World Trade Center victims he's met support a major downtown rebuilding effort.

"I'd say 85 to 90 percent of the families - when I talk to the sibling or the widow or the parent - they all say, ‘Rebuild lower Manhattan. My children are going to need a great education. They're going to need safe streets. They're going to need jobs. They're going to need housing,'" Bloomberg said.

Many victims' relatives consider the trade center site sacred ground, a view most vigorously reflected by former Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

Bloomberg made his remarks at an unusual City Hall "update" of lower Manhattan's progress.