Sandy restoration without rose-tinted glasses

Our governor provides us with the good news version of Sandy restoration, but there is also another view. Until a few weeks ago, Ron Dabal’s two-bedroom cottage on Colony Road was entombed in sand. It had been dumped there by Hurricane Sandy on Oct. 29 and sat unmoved for five months, waiting for someone to haul it off. No one came.” A recent Monmouth University poll indicates that while two thirds of those in the hardest hit areas are now back to normal, about 1-in-7 are far from recovery, and that there is a dip in confidence over how federal aid is being spent.

  •  The Record revealed over the past week that AshBritt inflated the distance debris was hauled in order to obtain higher rates.

  •  New Jersey Future expressed disappointment in the “$1.8 billion Community Development Block Grant revised program proposed by the the Governor and then approved and modified by the feds because it did not address “planning for sea-level rise, identifying optimal places for buy-outs, analyzing regional vulnerabilities, incorporating green infrastructure to reduce the impacts of flooding, developing county and local hazard mitigation plans, and aligning investments behind a set of resiliency and sustainability principles.”  

  •  Regarding the revised program Fair Share Housing Center (FSHC) thanked U.S. HUD Secretary Donovan for recognizing that the Christie Administration had not proposed enough in recovery to support renters, Spanish speaking families, and lower-income people impacted by the storm. FSHC said, “HUD’s action today is a good start, but more work remains to ensure that everyone impacted in Sandy has a place.”

  •  Patch indicates, Christie vetoed a Sandy oversight bill saying, “it’s redundant because the State Comptroller is tasked with Sandy oversight and already maintains such a transparency website.” Actually, a review of the Sandy Transparency Website shows it currently lists some 70 state and local Sandy contract awards but provides no information on expenditures – critical data for any transparency.  

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