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By Julie Shapiro
January 31, 2013

NEW YORK — The city is cracking down on the mold that has spread in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced Thursday.

Bloomberg unveiled a $15 million program that will clean up 2,000 homes that sprouted mold after being inundated with Sandy's floodwaters. He also announced dozens of free training sessions for the public on how to safely remove the fungus.

"Mold remains a challenge that many residents are confronting," Bloomberg said in a statement.

"Thanks to generous donations from people around the country and the world, the Mayor’s Fund, the Red Cross and the Robin Hood Foundation have teamed up to sponsor a $15 million mold-cleanup effort that will help thousands of families."

Bloomberg's announcement came after criticism from mayoral candidates and others that the city has not done enough to combat the mold that is growing in thousands of storm-damaged homes.

But some worried that the new cleanup plan wouldn't be enough.  

"While the mayor's acknowledgment of the mold crisis is a good first step, the $15 million in his program barely scratches the surface of what's needed to eliminate mold safely and effectively — and create local jobs," said the Back Home, Back to Work coalition of community and labor groups.

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