Early Tuesday morning governor Andrew Cuomo received word from the White House that President Barack Obama had signed a major disaster declaration for New York.

The declaration means that federal funding will be available to affected individuals in the counties of the Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York City, Suffolk and Queens. A similar declaration was issued for those affected in New Jersey.

Meanwhile governor Cuomo said that flooding in New York City and other parts of the state from storms Irene, Lee and Sandy have convinced him that the state must face a new reality of extreme weather events and has to find ways to deal with it.

He said the city will rebuild but also use this opportunity to build it back smarter.