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Vigil Held For Residents In Queens Areas Hit Hard By Sandy

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TWC News: Vigil Held For Residents In Queens Areas Hit Hard By Sandy
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More than a year after Hurricane Sandy, residents in hard hit areas of Queens held a prayer vigil Wednesday for those who haven't been able to rebuild yet.

The interfaith advocacy group behind the event said that only a tiny fraction of people who applied for the city's Build It Back program have gotten help so far.

They said that some residents are also having trouble accessing funding promised by banks and federal programs.

They said that their homes are in disarray 14 months after the storm.

"You almost feel homeless, and you're still paying a mortgage and you have half a home, and it's the holidays," said Jean Ferrara-Rodriquez, a Howard Beach resident.

"I think part of it is the bureaucracy," said Monsignor Alfred LoPinto, a pastor at St. Helen's Parish. "There's far too many agencies involved in this. There's no coordinated effort. That's why we're asking the new mayor, Mayor-elect [Bill] de Blasio, to make it a priority."

A spokesperson for the mayor-elect responded by saying, "Mayor-elect de Blasio shares these concerns about the slow pace of Sandy aid from the feds. He will lobby aggressively for this funding to be delivered comprehensively and more quickly." ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP