“Ground Zero” Task Force of Elected Officials Created

Sep 14, 2001 Issues: 9/11 Attacks

NEW YORK – Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) today announced the formation of a “Ground Zero” Elected Officials Task Force to address the ongoing needs of the Lower Manhattan community, which has been devastated by the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center.  The Task Force includes all elected officials at the city, state and federal level whose districts include the debris area of the attack.

The purpose of the Task Force is to serve as a clearinghouse for elected officials representing the affected areas and to create a consensus for needs to be communicated directly to disaster management officials. In doing so, the Task Force seeks to maximize operational efficiency and avoid duplication of effort, circular communication and lack of sensible prioritization of needs. The Task Force will also use its own resources to provide disaster officials with on-the-ground information and aid directly in providing high-level constituent services.

Rep. Nadler explained, “The emergency management teams of the city, state and federal governments have done remarkable jobs in assisting our ravaged community.  However, they can’t possibly be expected to anticipate every need of the people who live and work in Lower Manhattan.  Our job, as elected officials, is to communicate directly with the people we represent and respond to their concerns. This task force will plug the holes that the emergency management teams may have missed.  I look forward to working hand in hand with the relief workers and with all of the elected officials to assist our community in whatever way possible.”

The Task Force, which met for the first time today, is comprised of all the elected officials who represent the areas of Manhattan most affected by the September 11th attack:  Congressman Nadler, State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, State Senate Minority Leader Martin Connor, State Senator Thomas Duane, Assemblymember Deborah Glick, City Councilmember Kathryn Freed, Councilmember Margarita Lopez, and Manhattan Borough President C. Virginia Fields.

The Task Force is designed to determine the needs of the community that have not yet been addressed by disaster relief officials, prioritize these needs, and communicate them to the emergency management officials on the scene.  One of its first priorities is to provide senior citizens the ability to fill prescriptions because many pharmacies were forced to close in the
aftermath of the attack.  The Task Force will work with relief officials to design a temporary solution to this and other problems that arise.

Rep. Nadler has served in Congress since 1992.  He represents the 8th Congressional District of New York, which includes the site of the World Trade Center attack.