Yesterday, in the State of the State address in Trenton, Governor Chris Christie eloquently spoke of the courage, tenacity and resolve of the people of New Jersey both during and after the worst storm in our history.
He introduced and told the stories of a few jersey heroes. However, the statehouse could have been filled to overflowing with people who performed remarkable feats of selflessness and bravery.
On the Saturday before Sandy’s arrival, I joined the governor, Monmouth County OEM Director Shaun Golden (who has done a superb job), and FEMA and other officials in Middletown for a press conference. In vintage Christie fashion, those in the crosshairs of Sandy were not only admonished to get off the beach but to get out of town.
In hindsight, the aggressive, pre-storm plan not only mitigated the loss of life but persevered property as well.
The response to Sandy before, during and after has been textbook. Cooperation among state, local and federal officials throughout it all is the best I have ever seen.
Mayors and their OEM teams have been extrodinary. They’ve been like NFL quarterbacks, constantly adjusting.
Thank you Mayor Matt Doherty and your OEM Team for effectively quarterbacking Belmar’s emergency response and moving quickly to rebuild. The Belmar boardwalk is special to many people including my family. For the record, my grandparents owned a place in Belmar and my family and I spent a portion of every summer in the 1960’s and 1970’s at Belmar. As a matter of fact, I proposed to my wife, Marie, on a Belmar jetty in 1976.
A new and better and stronger and longer 1.2 –mile, $6.6 million boardwalk tells the world ‘Belmar’s Back!’
But we can’t stop there. For many years, many congressionally-authorized Army Corps of Engineers projects, including beach replenishment, have not been funded. The record shows that damage was less severe where such projects were completed.
Belmar, like many shore towns, has not been renourished in over a dozen years. We hope to change that next week – January 15th – when the House considers the Sandy Supplemental Appropriations Bill.