Tapped In: Langone Receives Federal Aid, Mount Sinai Opens Medical Center, City Economy Growing

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LANGONE HOSPITALS RECEIVE FEDERAL AID New York University's Langone Medical Center is receiving $114 million in aid from the federal government this week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Sunday. The award-winning hospital complex on First Avenue was evacuated and shut down on the night of Hurricane Sandy when heavy flooding knocked out its backup generator. According to CEO Robert Grossman, the complex sustained $1.1 billion in damages. "I was here that night and I saw the East River blending into Second Avenue," Cuomo said in his announcement. "We knew right away the damage that was going to be done to this great institution." Workers are now in the process of drying out flooded areas in the complex, and Langone aims to restore full service by January. CONGRESS MEMBERS ASK FOR POST-SANDY FOOD STAMP RELIEF Members of Congress including Carolyn Maloney and Jerrold Nadler demanded easier access to federal food stamps for New Yorkers still suffering from Hurricane Sandy last week. The members wrote a letter to Mayor Michael Bloomberg requesting looser eligibility requirements and expanded eligibility zones for the U.S. Department of Agriculture-administered Disaster Supplemental Food Stamp (D-SNAP) program, which provides relief funding to help feed those who were hit hard by the October storm. "Making it as easy as possible for those affected by Hurricane Sandy to have access to the resources they need to recover will also help our city rebuild," the congress members wrote. "Allowing survivors better access to relief programs like D-SNAP will mean more people will be able to sign up, which will also translate into more profits for local small businesses such as grocery stores." The members noted that many New Yorkers whose homes were damaged by the storm's extensive flooding were elderly or handicapped, so they would particularly benefit from easier access to the federal benefits. MOUNT SINAI OPENS NEW MEDICAL CENTER Mount Sinai Medical Center opened the Leon and Norma Hess Center for Science and Medicine last week. The new 500,000-square-foot, $440 million clinical and research facility, located at 1470 Madison Ave., features eight floors of laboratories and outpatient care offices that will treat a range of diseases and disabilities, including cancer and autism. A new 52-story apartment building next to the center at 1214 Fifth Avenue will be used by the hospital for primary care and diabetes work in addition to providing luxury and affordable housing. At the hospital's opening on Thursday, Mount Sinai reps said that in the coming years the new center is expected to generate over 800 jobs and garner over $350 million of National Institutes of Health funding. CITY'S CREATIVE ECONOMY GROWING, BUT MINORITIES BEING LEFT BEHIND Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer's office released a report last week on the city's entrepreneurial economy. Titled "Start-Up City: Growing New York's Entrepreneurial Ecosystem for All," the report summarized recent growths in "entrepreneurial" industries like finance, fashion, marketing and technology, but also addressed these fields' limited accessibility, citing census data that showed only 29 percent of employed Blacks and 20 percent of employed Latinos work in these "creative economies." "Too many working-class New Yorkers lack the resources and skills to share in this growth," Stringer said in a statement, noting that annual salaries for jobs in this new tech economy often start at $65,000, well above the city's median family income. "We need to turn this engine into a pipeline to the middle class for thousands of New Yorkers." To achieve this end, the report recommends increasing office and housing affordability, expanding computer science training in public schools and improving transportation to growing business districts, among other initiatives.

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