LI Power Company COO resigns as 35,000 remain without Power Weeks after Storm
Weeks after Super Storm Sandy ravaged the East Coast, tens of thousands of New Yorkers in Queens and Long Island remain without power, leading to massive outrage among residents and the resignation of one power company executive.
On Tuesday, the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) announced the resignation of chief operating officer Michael Hervey, a 12-year veteran of the power company who received much of the blame for the company’s inability to restore power to its customers.
“Mike has provided 12 years of valuable service to LIPA, including taking on the responsibility to perform the functions of CEO of the organization over the past two years," LIPA Chairman Howard Steinberg wrote in a statement on the company’s site. "Mike has played a leadership role in connection with the planned structural changes at LIPA going forward which will result in better service and accountability to LIPA’s customers in the years ahead . . . On behalf of the Board of Trustees I have accepted his resignation, with regret.”
Hervey’s resignation will be effective Dec. 31.
Politicians were quick to respond to the resignation.
“While LIPA's linemen and other field workers have worked hard during the recovery from Hurricane Sandy, the agency has shown a breathtaking lack of organization, preparedness and communication in ways that can only be held accountable at the highest levels of the agency,” said Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy
, who represents New York’s Fourth Congressional District which includes communities in Long Island’s Nassau County and on the Rockaways that were hit hard by the storm.
“Mr. Hervey’s resignation will be welcomed by thousands of Long Islanders still without power and will hopefully also signal a new chapter for our region’s power infrastructure.”
LIPA customers in the impacted areas appeared to share McCarthy’s sentiments
“I don’t know how he wasn’t fired . . . I’m ecstatic," Oceanside resident Laura Brennan said in an interview with CBS
. "I’m hoping they get someone in who can do the job the appropriate way, cause this is ridiculous.”
More than 35,000 residents remained without power as of Tuesday night, according to media reports. LIPA claims it has restored services to approximately 1.1 million of its customer since Sandy hit.
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