There has been plenty written about the recovery from Sandy as we pass the one year anniversary, much of it revealing the reality of continued struggles of thousands of New Jersey residents and businesses to get basic assistance and information.
This past weekend I attended a breakfast where Barbara Buono listened to and spoke with people who have not experienced a day of normal since the storm. Their stories are heartbreaking, ire inspiring, and indicative of this administration's failed efforts to implement effective recovery for New Jersey residents in a fair and equitable manner.
Residents are being given dates in December 2013 for evaluation of their assistance application, people are being told the demolition of their house is not a priority at this moment so they will have to wait, people have had to resubmit paper work three times as offices lose documents. These stories are widespread and unacceptable. They are also unaddressed by our current Governor.
The trauma of the storm pales in comparison to the traumas these people go through, describing the paperwork and red tape as a full time job and stress inducing to the point of needing to take time off of work.
What continues to strike me is the unwillingness of this Governor to take responsibility for what has gone wrong, as Senator Buono pointed out while speaking to residents. Whenever there is success, he takes credit, but where there is fault, he does not own up. He has allowed the offices responsible for recovery to function poorly without adequate trained staff, without a sense of urgency and with red tape and incompetance that he blames on the Federal Government. He refueses to release data that would illuminate what has not been done which is his standard stalling tactic. And while other states produce comprehensive plans for storm preparation, Christie has offered up his view on climate change – esoteric and little in the way of preparing for the next storm.
It is clear to me, as I believe it is to thousands still struggling after the storm, that the continued damage being done here is by Christie himself. He is a force of destruction and disregard that must be exposed and stopped. We cannot afford another four, or even two, years of Superstorm Christie.