Cuomo defends decision to forgo Westchester storm tour

Posted: Updated:

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is defending his decision to forgo surveying Westchester storm damage during the recent nor’easters.

Some residents and officials criticized the governor for making a formal appearance Sunday at a political rally for Democratic state Senate candidate Shelly Mayer, but not touring storm damage after tens of thousands of homes went dark for a dangerously long time. 

 “I'm outraged he came down for a partisan political rally and not to help the hardworking residents of Westchester,” said Julie Killian, Mayer’s opponent.

Cuomo, who lives in Mount Kisco, told reporters that he sees the damage every night and day. He also told reporters that major storms have become a regular occurrence.

“This is probably the 15th storm I've gone through - hurricanes, floods, snowstorms,” he said.

He said what was special about the last two storms was the utility companies' recklessly slow response time.

“There was nothing to see. That's what makes it more obnoxious that it took so long to turn on the power because it was nothing special,” said Cuomo

Cuomo says he initiated an investigation into the utility companies last week.

Gov. Cuomo also told supporters that the rally for Shelley Mayer wasn't just about supporting a candidate. If Mayer wins, Democrats will control the state Senate. Cuomo says that's essential to protecting the state against the president's politics and values.

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