Mayor Michael Bloomberg warned that the continuing government shutdown could cause serious delays in distributing Superstorm Sandy relief money. The New York Daily News is reporting that Bloomberg and mayoral candidates Bill de Blasio and Joe Lhota all expressed the same opinion that the shutdown could harm people and businesses trying to recover from the storm.
With much of the federal workforce furloughed, aid money flowing from Community Development Block Grants is likely to be slowed due to the lack of government workers pushing it through the system.
In his weekly radio address, Bloomberg described dire consequences if the shutdown doesn’t end soon.
“Right now, Washington’s gridlock is doing real harm to our nation’s economy – and if they don’t get their acts together soon, New York City families, especially those who endured the worst from Hurricane Sandy, will feel real pain,” Bloomberg said, “If, for example, you’re a business owner in the Rockaways, this could mean a longer wait time to get grants and loans – prolonging what has been an already difficult and cumbersome process for so many.”
Bloomberg also said that politicians in Washington had lost sight of the fact that their disagreements were affecting the lives of real people, stating that, “Enough is enough.”
The Daily News described how both De Blasio and Lhota agreed that the gridlock in DC must come to an end, yet they both descended into partisan bickering over who was to blame:
“The Republicans in the House if they want to live up to the phrase patriotic should settle this problem now so the people in this country who have suffered from natural disasters don’t suffer more,” [de Blasio] said.
“Mr. Lhota is a Republican. He’s a proud republican. He is someone who’s been a Republican all his life. And his party continues to do things that hurt the interests of New York City. And I think that Republicans like him should have long ago fought back against the negative trends in their party. They should not have accepted it and they should have considered leaving the Republican Party,” he said.
“I don’t understand in this day and age how someone could continue to be a Republican and say that they want to help New York City move forward.”
Lhota condemned the shutdown and insisted trying to tie him to Republicans in Washington is unfair. “I’ve blasted the Congressional Republicans for their actions,” he said.
“While I may be a Republican, I don’t believe in what those Congressional Republicans are doing. They’re serving themselves, they’re not serving the people who elected them.”