By Paula Katinas
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
In a sign that Coney Island is bouncing back from the destruction of Hurricane Sandy, state Sen. Diane Savino announced that she has reopened her district office there.
Savino (D-Brooklyn-Staten Island) reopened her office at 2872 West 15th St. She had maintained an office at that location from the time she was elected in 2004. Savino also has an office on the Staten Island side of her senate district.
The Coney Island office was closed for five months due to damage from Superstorm Sandy, the lawmaker said. The office, like many buildings in Coney Island, was completely submerged in the storm. Equipment was destroyed and office furniture was damaged beyond repair, Savino said.
Since the storm, Savino and her staff have worked out of temporary distribution sites at MCU Park, the community room at Ocean Towers, and City Councilman Domenic Recchia Jr.’s office.
Savino said that she and her staff are happy to be back in their own space. The reopening is an important sign for Coney Island's revival, too, she added. “Coney Island has been turned upside down by this storm. Life has still not returned to normal. Every bit of normalcy that returns is good. It’s a sign that there is light at the end of the tunnel for people,” she told the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.
Reopening the office she has worked out of for nearly nine years was important to her, Savino said. “The constituents had gotten used to walking into the office, sitting down, and being able to talk to someone on my staff,” she said.
Savino’s Brooklyn staff members, Sheila Boyd, Alex Later and Olga Fiore, stand ready to advocate for the community, the senator said. Savino represents Coney Island, Seagate, and parts of Brighton Beach, Manhattan Beach, Gravesend, Bensonhurst, Dyker Heights, and Sunset Park. Savino ‘s district also includes the Towers of Bay Ridge, twin co-op apartment houses on 65th Street in Bay Ridge.
The office is open Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Translation services are available onsite in Russian. Call the office at 718-333-0311 for more information.
Savino is a member of a bi-partisan task force of senators and assembly members that is examining the extent of the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy. The task force is also coming up with recommendations on how to mitigate the damage from future storms.