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New York governor seeks volunteers for storm clean up

Residents inspect fallen power lines in Hampton Bays, New York
Residents inspect fallen power lines in Hampton Bays, New York

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Governor Andrew Cuomo on Friday called on New Yorkers to volunteer part of their Labor Day weekend to clean up debris left by Hurricane Irene.

The "Labor for Your Neighbor" initiative will shuttle volunteers on Sunday and Monday to devastated areas in Schoharie Valley, North Country and the Catskills, where mud and debris left by floodwaters need to be cleared.

"This is an opportunity to start to mobilize citizen good, citizen effort and citizen energy," said Cuomo, who promised to join the clean up.

The National Guard and the State Office of Emergency Management will be providing supervision and transportation to the sites.

A donation fund has also been set up by United Way for those who cannot make the trip, Cuomo added.

Irene caused about $1 billion damage in New York state, destroying around 600 homes, Cuomo said.

(Reporting by Paula Rogo; Editing by Jerry Norton)