Photo by Luke Abaffy
At Breezy Point in Brooklyn, N.Y., cleanup is under way and homeowners can register for NYC Rapid Repairs.

Contractors can now register online for New York City’s rapid repairs program that will help homeowners rebuild after Superstorm Sandy. The Building Trades Employers Association of New York City is helping to reach out to contractors and suppliers by hosting a registration form on its website.

The program, called NYC Rapid Repairs, was announced Nov. 9 by Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Director of Housing Recovery Operations Brad Gair. Homeowners need help and they need it now, the mayor said in a news release: “We’ve come up with an innovative and unprecedented way to bring government resources to bear on this recovery effort.”

The city is sending teams of contractors and inspectors into neighborhoods with damage in partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Unlike the typical FEMA process where homeowners hire contractors individually, owners who sign up for the program at will be served by teams working their way through the city by geographical area.

“The current plan is to divide the city into three or four geographic areas with a program manager for each,” says Louis J.  Coletti, president and CEO of BTEA. “We got a call from Caswell Holloway, deputy mayor for operations, asking BTEA to be a central coordinating point.” Coletti said funding will come from FEMA and compared the response to the cleanup of the World Trade Center site after 9/11.

Interested contractors also have to register with the FEMA Disaster Response Registry’s System for Award Management. They also must complete the FEMA Vendor Profile Form. Contact the Industry Liaison Support Center at for this form or call 206-646-1895.

Materials supply is another issue the teams have identified and will be addressing, Coletti says. The city is trying to avoid putting people in trailers, he adds, “when we could fix the homes and let families move forward.”