Plus, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano issued a temporary waiver of the Jones Act, allowing oil tankers from the Gulf of Mexico to enter northeastern ports.
On Saturday, officials cheered developments on several fronts. With one small exception, the Port of New York and New Jersey is now open to all vessels, the Coast Guard said. All water has been removed from the once-flooded World Trade Center work site, said Cuomo. Nearly $28 million in federal disaster emergency grants have been allocated across nine counties, the governor added.
Still, as millions can attest, headaches and heartache from Sandy persist.
The 900-mile-wide superstorm left a huge swath of damage when it hit the Northeast this week, claiming at least 106 lives in the United States and two in Canada after earlier killing 67 around the Caribbean.
Worst-hit New York state suffered 48 deaths, including 41 in New York City, authorities said. Twenty of those were in Staten Island.
As communities grapple with the human toll, the price of the damage is stunning: between $30 billion and $50 billion, according to disaster modeling firm Eqecat. That far exceeds the firm's pre-storm estimate of $20 billion.
The region may be in for more bad weather, with a weaker storm predicted for next week. But Christie, for one, isn't ready for that quite yet.
"I know there are some forecasts of a Nor'easter next week," the governor said. "I can't believe it."