METROFOCUS & Former Mayor Ed Koch Investigate After-Effects of Sandy; Airs 1/19 on WLIW21


The long road to recovery is far from over for a majority of Tri-State residents affected by the disastrous effects of Hurricane Sandy. Hosted by Rafael Pi Roman, this edition of MetroFocus explores topics ranging from the New York hospitals affected by power outages during the storm to a proposed solution from the ASPCA for residents who refuse to leave their pets during mandatory evacuations when MetroFocus airs Wednesday, December 19 at 7:00 p.m. on WLIW21, Thursday, December 20 at 8:00p.m. on NJTV and at 8:30 p.m. on THIRTEEN. After broadcast, the program will be available to national audiences on with integrated online stories and additional reporting.

In a featured interview with Pi Roman, former Mayor Ed Koch discusses the effects of Sandy and commends Mayor Bloomberg's response to the storm, as well as recalls his experiences dealing with city-wide crises during his incumbency. Koch also offers his opinions on the upcoming New York mayoral election, talking about his endorsement of Christine Quinn.

"I have endorsed Christine Quinn. I worry about it. I worry about her, I worry about the others," says Koch during the interview. "Because I changed New York. Before me, it was a radical left-wing town that was being destroyed by the municipal unions and their demands for pensions and wages and so forth and they brought us to The Edge of bankruptcy. Now we are a tower of strength again, but I worry about the impact of those same unions who are now making demands on all of the candidates who are running."

Featured interviews also include Dr. Sheri Fink, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist; and Christie Todd Whitman, former New Jersey Governor.

The segments are as follows:
- Pi Roman interviews former New York City Mayor Ed Koch about Sandy recovery, including the politics and billions of dollars needed for relief, as well as talks about the upcoming New York mayoral race.
- An in-depth, behind-the-scenes look at what happened when the power went out at New York hospitals during Hurricane Sandy. Reporter Rick Karr visits Coney Island Hospital in Brooklyn where almost two months after the storm, there is still limited care available.
- Pi Roman interviews Pulitzer Prize-winner Dr. Sheri Fink, who documented the catastrophic failures in a New Orleans' hospital after Hurricane Katrina, and whose reporting for The New York Times and ProPublica is raising questions about care for the region's most vulnerable populations in hospitals and nursing homes.
- Continuing the coverage of Sandy's aftermath, NJToday Managing Editor Mike Schneider interviews former New Jersey Governor Christie Todd Whitman.
- NJToday's Lauren Wanko reports on the positive effects of the dunes that may have saved Bradley Beach during Hurricane Sandy.
- The ASPCA offers what could be a permanent solution for the continuing problem of residents who don't want to leave their pets during an evacuation by building a temporary shelter during a crisis.

MetroFocusis a production of WLIW21 in association with WNET, parent company of THIRTEEN and WLIW21. For 50 years, THIRTEEN has been making the most of the rich resources and passionate people of New York and the world, reaching millions of people with on-air and online programming that celebrates arts and culture, offers insightful commentary on the news of the day, explores the worlds of science and nature, and invites students of all ages to have fun while learning.

MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Jody and John Arnhold, and The Nissan Foundation. Corporate funding is provided by Mutual of America.