Obama Administration Looking To Divert Billions in Sandy Funds Away From New Jersey and New York

By Art Gallagher, artvg@aol.com

repost-us-image-10549927The Obama Administration is considering holding a contest for areas impacted by disasters other than Superstorm Sandy.  The “winners” would get between $1 billion and $2 billion of the remaining $3.6 billion is Sandy relief dollars being doled out by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), according to a story first reported by the Wall Street Journal

The Record reports that New Jersey Congressmen Bill Pascrell Jr., D-Paterson; Albio Sires, D-West New York; and Frank Pallone, D-Long Branch, and Sen. Bob Menendez are urging HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan not to divert federal aid to projects in other parts of the country.  Members of the New York Congressional Delegation are making similar pleas.

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Bookerism of the Day

Where’s Senator Cory Booker?  He’s proselytizing on twitter. 

Sires told The Record that the entire New Jersey delegation could join together in opposition to a nationwide contest for the money.  That would be great!  Sires should lead the Democrats in the delegation in ending the partisanship that has been dominating the discourse over Sandy recovery and sign the letter to Donovan and Michael Boots, the Acting Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality that Congressman Chris Smith invited him, and all members of the delegation to sign requesting a meeting to hash out the multitude of issues New Jersey residents are having with the HUD relief process.

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Posted: April 24th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Chris Smith, Cory Booker, Hurricane Sandy, Superstorm Sandy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Middletown Calls On Christie, Legislature To Allow Affordable Housing Funds To Assist Sandy Impacted Homeowners

IMG_3871 (640x427)Citing the shortage of federal and state funds available to assist Superstorm Sandy impacted homeowners in rebuilding their homes, the Middletown Township Committtee this week joined Marlboro Mayor Jonathan Hornik and Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon in calling on the state legislature and Governor Chris Christie to put the more than $100 million in Affordable Housing Funds that are sitting dormant to work.

With a unanimous 5-0 vote, the committee passed a resolution on Monday, April 21, calling for legislation that would reinstate Regional Contribution Agreements (RCAs) “for the limited purpose of getting victims of Superstorm Sandy back in their homes during this time of need.”

RCAs were created in the original 1985 Fair Housing Act whereby towns with funds raised from developer fees or through bonding could transfer up to half of those funds to another community for the purpose of building affordable housing as required by the New Jersey Supreme Court’s Mt. Laurel decision.

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Posted: April 23rd, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: COAH, Declan O'Scanlon, Hurricane Sandy, Jersey Shore, Marlboro, Middletown, Monmouth County, National Flood Insurance Plan, NJ State Legislature, Tony Fiore | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

The Politics Of Disaster Relief

By Art Gallagher, artvg@aol.com

When disaster hits, natural or man made, Americans put aside their differences and come together to handle the emergency.

We saw it with 9-11. Most recently in New Jersey we saw it with Superstorm Sandy.

Once the emergency is over and the federal money is flowing, the politics…partisanship and patronage starts.  We saw it with 9-11. We’re living it with Sandy.

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Posted: April 13th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: 2014 Congressional Races, 2014 Elections, 2014 U.S. Senate race, 2016 Presidential Politics, 2017 NJ Gubernatorial Politics, Bob Menendez, Chris Christie, Chris Smith, Christie Administration, Congress, Cory Booker, Democrats, Department of Community Affairs, Department of Homland Security, Frank Pallone, George W Bush, Housing, Hurricane Sandy, Jennifer Beck, Jersey Shore, NJ Democrats, NJ State Legislature, RREM, Superstorm Sandy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

Hurricane Sandy victims make do in trailers as they wait to rebuild

Hurricane Sandy victims make do in trailers as they wait to rebuild (via NJ.com)

Tina Napalo lived in a bungalow-style house on Fourth Street in Union Beach for more than 20 years. “I didn’t have everything,” said the 40-year-old mother of four, but, “it took me a long time to get what I had.” Then Hurricane Sandy hit.…

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Posted: March 16th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Chris Christie, Christie Administration, Highlands, Hurricane Sandy, Keansburg, Middletown, Monmouth County, Obama Administration, RREM, Sea Bright, Superstorm Sandy, Union Beach | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

State reopens appeals period for 2 Sandy relief programs

State reopens appeals period for 2 Sandy relief programs (via NJ.com)

By Richard Khavkine and Erin O’Neill New Jersey officials are reopening the appeals period for residents whose initial applications for two Hurricane Sandy relief programs were denied, according to the state Department of Community Affairs, the agency…

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Posted: February 10th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: DCA, Department of Community Affairs, Huricane Sandy Relief Fund, Hurricane Sandy | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment »

NJ’s Awash in Federal Sandy Aid, But Funds Just Trickle Out of DCA’s Spigot

NJ’s Awash in Federal Sandy Aid, But Funds Just Trickle Out of DCA’s Spigot (via NJSpotlight)

More than 15 months after Superstorm Sandy, New Jersey has approved awarding little more than a quarter of the money available from the largest housing assistance program it established to help those most affected by the hurricane, and has actually…

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Posted: February 9th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Hurricane Sandy, Jersey Shore, Monmouth County, Superstorm Sandy | Tags: , , , , , , | No Comments »

Christie in Keansburg: Sandy Relief Will Fall $17 Billion Short

Photo by Paul Scharff

Photo by Paul Scharff

Governor Chris Christie came to the bayshore with members of his cabinet yesterday with a sobering message for residents battered by Superstorm Sandy who a waiting for government assistance to rebuild their homes and to comply with new government imposed requirements for those homes.

New Jersey sustained $37 billion in damage from Sandy.  Federal assistance to New Jersey will tap out at between $15 and $20 billion, Christie said.

It’s been 15 months since Superstorm Sandy ravaged New Jersey. The first $1.83 billion in relief from the Department of Housing and Urban Development has been spent or is committed.  Another $1.46 billion is being applied for, but it will be another three months at least before that money starts to flow.

The HUD Community Block Development Grants (CBDG) grants are the last resort funding for homeowners and renters/landlords, designed to fill needs not covered by insurance proceeds, FEMA assistance, Small Business Administration loans and other sources.

Before New Jersey receives the $1.46 billion second round of funding, there is a 30 day public comment period on the CDBG Disaster Recovery Action Plan.  The public comment period runs through March 5.  In Monmouth County, there will be a public hearing on February 13 at Brookdale Community College, Robert J. Collins Arena, 765 Newman Springs Rd, Lincroft from 4pm-7pm.  There will be hearing is Atlantic County at Stockton University on February 11 and in Essex County at the New Jersey Institute of Technology on the 12th.  Written comments can be submitted via email to sandy.publiccomment@dca.state.nj.us or can be provided by mail to the attention of Gabrielle Gallagher, NJ Department of Community Affairs, 101 South Broad Street, Post Office Box 800, Trenton, New Jersey 08625-0800.  All comments must be submitted by 5 p.m. on March 5, 2014.

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Posted: February 5th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Chris Christie, Christie Administration, Community Development Block Grant, Huricane Sandy Relief Fund, Hurricane Sandy, Keansburg, Monmouth County, Superstorm Sandy | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Christie asks FEMA to revise time limit for filing lawsuits over Sandy flood claims

Christie asks FEMA to revise time limit for filing lawsuits over Sandy flood claims (via NJ.com)

The governor has asked the federal government to revise the time limit for residents affected by Hurricane Sandy to file lawsuits regarding their flood insurance claims. Gov. Chris Christie thanked Craig Fugate, the administrator of the Federal Emergency…

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Posted: January 3rd, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Chris Christie, FEMA, Hurricane Sandy, Superstorm Sandy | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Toms River Man Wanted For Sandy Fraud

Brian Nogiewich. Photo via Monmouth Co Prosecutors Office

Brian Nogiewich. Photo via Monmouth Co Prosecutors Office

Judge Joseph W. Oxley issued an arrest warrant for Brian Nogiewich, 54, of Toms River, today when Nogiewich failed to surrender to the Monmouth County Super Storm Sandy Fraud Task Force.

Nogiewich is charged with Theft for failing to deliver natural gas powered electrical generators to customers who paid him for them in the wake of Super Storm Sandy, according to a statement from Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni.

The joint investigation by members of the Monmouth County Superstorm Sandy Fraud Task Force, including the FBI, revealed that Nogiewich accepted payments from two Monmouth County residents in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, but failed to either deliver the natural gas-powered generators or refund his customers’ money. One victim paid Nogiewich a deposit of just under $3,000, while the second victim paid him more than $4,700 for the power plant. Neither victim has received a generator or a refund.

The investigation further revealed an application by Nogiewich to the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs for a Home Improvement Contractor Registration Number contained false information.

Nogiewich is charged with two counts of third degree Theft by Deception and one count of fourth degree Failure to Register with Division of Consumer Affairs.

Nogiewich has continued to evade authorities since failing to surrender after telling investigators he was in the State of Delaware and would return to New Jersey.  Additional information has led investigators to believe he may also be in Upstate New York.

Anyone with information about the whereabouts of Nogiewich is urged to call Detective Elethia Baldwin, of this Office at 732-431-7160 ext. 6349 or toll-free at 1-800-533-7443.

Posted: October 9th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Crime, Crime and Punishment, Hurricane Sandy, Monmouth County Prosecutor, Superstorm Sandy | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Homeowners Hit By Sandy Get More Time to Appeal Settlements

Homeowners Hit By Sandy Get More Time to Appeal Settlements (via NJSpotlight)

Sandy survivors still battling over their flood insurance claims will now have more time to appeal their settlements. In a bulletin issued yesterday FEMA announced it will extend for another six months the period for Sandy-impacted homeowners to file…

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Posted: October 2nd, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: FEMA, Hurricane Sandy, News, NJNewsCommons, RePost, Superstorm Sandy | Tags: , , | 2 Comments »