Beck, Kyrillos Blast Menendez for Trying to Further Impede Sandy Recovery

Beck, Kyrillos Blast Menendez for Trying to Further Impede Sandy Recovery

New Jersey Senators Jennifer Beck and Joe Kyrillos (both R-Monmouth) urged U.S. Senator Bob Menendez to help facilitate the state’s recovery from Superstorm Sandy, rather than pushing for ways to slow it down. On Wednesday, Menendez called for even more federal regulations on how New Jersey delivers $1.4 billion in aid to people who have been hampered by federal rules since the October 2012 storm.

“At the grassroots level, residents are being hung by federal regulations and a lack of federal funding,” Beck said. “There are 7,000 people on waiting list for the Rehabilitation, Reconstruction, Elevation and Mitigation (RREM) program because we don’t have enough federal money to fund them all. New Jersey also received $400 million less in CDBG money the second round than the first round. Why isn’t Senator Menendez addressing this when all of our programs are oversubscribed? Either Senator Menendez is completely out of touch with our residents’ struggles or he has a political motivation to slow down recovery to try to make a popular Republican governor look bad. He has to get with the program and do his job for the people.”

Senators Beck and Kyrillos urged Senator Menendez to help the people on a fundamental level, instead of spreading gross mischaracterizations about things such as state assistance to low- and moderate-income households. According to the DCA as of late February, New Jersey had obligated more than $1 billion of the $1.8 billion of recovery funding, with more than 70 percent of the housing funds awarded to low-to-moderate income (LMI) households.

“Anyone who talks to New Jersey’s Sandy victims, sees their devastation and understands how they’ve struggled to combat smothering federal regulations knows that we need more resources to recover from nearly $37 billion in damages,” Kyrillos said. “New York has received about $4 billion more than our state in federal aid — that’s about twice as much. It’s also ludicrous that the federal government is denying a state waiver to allow people to rebuild as they apply for grant money. Our federal representatives, starting with Senator Menendez, must make sure HUD provides a fair return on tax dollars when people need it most.”

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Grant Whelply
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