Township, MUA to Receive Federal 'Sandy' Response Funding
Grants will total more than $4 million
Grants to Brick Township and the Brick Township Municipal Utilities Authority aimed at alleviating cleanup costs incurred after Superstorm Sandy will total more than $4 million, federal officials announced Tuesday.
The township's municipal government will receive $1,426,008 and the MUA will receive $2,625,000, according to statements issued by Senator Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez [both D-NJ], as well as Rep. Chris Smith [R-4].
"When Superstorm Sandy hit New Jersey, local governments acted without hesitation to aid local residents, and this federal funding will help ease the costs of recovery for Brick Township," said Lautenberg, the Vice Chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee that funds FEMA.
The Brick appropriation is intended to offset costs related to the initial response to the storm.
"Brick was hard hit by Superstorm Sandy," Smith said. "This first step of initial funding for Brick will enable the township to better plan its rebuilding efforts as we move into the New Year," Smith said.
Business Administrator Scott Pezarras said recovery operations before Nov. 14 will be reimbursed by FEMA at 100 percent, while operations after Nov. 14 will be reimbursed at a rate of 75 percent.
At a township council meeting Tuesday night, Pezarras said there is a chance that recovery efforts after the Nov. 14 deadline could evetually qualify for a 90 percent reimbursement rate.
According to Gov. Chris Christie's office, the grants announced Tuesday will reimburse $1.4 million of the $1.9 million the township spent, and $2.6 million of the $3.5 million spent by the BTMUA.
"When Superstorm Sandy struck our shores, first responders and other public employees in towns such as Brick Township rushed to aid residents and begin the long recovery process. This funding will help Brick Township recoup some of the cost of those efforts," said Menendez.
The township's response included deploying all 125 police officers for four weeks, plus 90 public works employees who worked to clear roadways. Those employees worked on-off 12 hour shifts, seven days a week, for four weeks.
Sandy's storm surge damaged all 26 pump stations operated by the BTMUA, including 10 stations that flooded.
In their statements, Lautenberg, Menendez and Smith all expressed a desire for both house of congress to grant President Barack Obama's request for $60 billion in storm aid.