The Ederal Emergency Management Administration notes help is available for individuals whose homes or businesses were affected by Hurricane Sandy in all 21 New Jersey counties.
Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, Small Business Administration low-interest loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help homeowners, renters, and business owners recover from the effects of Hurricane Sandy.
FEMA’s first priorities for housing assistance include financial assistance for home repairs and the use of available housing stock in the affected area (for example, available rental units. FEMA is coordinating with other federal agencies such as our federal partner, U.S. Housing and Urban Development, to identify additional, available temporary housing resources for disaster survivors.
Disaster Recovery Centers are open in Atlantic, Bergen, Burlington, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Salem, Somerset, Sussex, Union and Warren counties to assist survivors with registration. To find a disaster recovery center location, residents can check out the disaster recovery center locator at www.FEMA.gov/disaster-recovery-centers or by mobile phone at m.fema.gov. Residents can also text DRC and a zipcode to 43362 (4FEMA).
New Jersey residents can visit http://nj211.org/hurricane.cfm or call 2-1-1 to find information about FEMA assistance and how to apply, clean-up resources and local recovery efforts.
Disaster Unemployment Assistance benefits are available for those whose jobs were impacted by the hurricane. That includes people not normally eligible for unemployment benefits, such as self-employed persons and farm workers. Registration closes February 4, 2013; applicants should contact a New Jersey Reemployment Call Center. Locations include Union City (201-601-4100), Freehold (732-761-2020), and Cumberland (856-507-2340).
Free Legal Aid now available to disaster survivors - FEMA is working with the New Jersey State Bar Association, and ABA Young Lawyers Division to provide free legal aid to storm survivors. Disaster survivors may call toll-free at 888-541-1900 Monday through Friday from 9-5. Callers may leave a message which will be returned the next day. The hotline is open to residents who need legal help related to the disaster such as insurance-related claims, landlord-tenant matters, FEMA appeals and creditor-debtor matters.
KEY FEDERAL AGENCY RESPONSE AND RECOVERY EFFORTS
Department of Health and Human Services
- Approximately 800 HHS personnel remain deployed to provide public health and medical assistance to New York and New Jersey in Hurricane Sandy response and recovery efforts.
- As hospitals, nursing homes and other healthcare facilities return to service, HHS teams return to their home states. Nine Disaster Medical Assistance Teams from the National Disaster Medical System with caches of medical supplies and two teams of U.S. Public Health Service commissioned corps officers are currently deployed to New Jersey and New York to provide care in medical shelters and augment hospital staff the states’ and city’s request.
- These teams include behavioral health professionals from the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps deployed to provide mental health support in shelters and for first responders. Residents also can connect with local crisis counselors through the National Disaster Distress Helpline. This toll-free, multilingual, crisis support service is available 24/7 via telephone (1-800-985-5990) and SMS (text ‘TalkWithUs’ to 66746).
- Monday, 21 FEMA Corps Teams encompassing 217 members are currently on the ground in 11 New Jersey counties providing Community Relations support.
American Red Cross
- Red Cross has established a call center for Hurricane Sandy at 800-RED-CROSS (800-733-2767) for all inquiries.
- Outreach operations continue providing disaster relief items across Hoboken, New Jersey.
National Guard Bureau:
- More than 3,900 National Guard Soldiers and Airmen from 10 states are conducting debris clearing, fuel distribution, security, transportation, communications, shelter operations, generator distribution, traffic control, and wellness checks in support of recovery efforts.
- Nearly 12,000 National Guard members from 21 states and the District of Columbia supported Sandy recovery efforts at the peak of operations.
- Air National Guard (ANG) C-27J, C-130, C-17 and C-5 crews from 16 units hauled more than 2,160 tons of power generation equipment, food, water, and other needed supplies during 38 airlift missions.
- Employers of National Guard members continue to support our Soldiers and Airmen during the recovery effort.
- Nearly 830 Army and Air Guard members from 7 states (PA 440, MA 136, OH 132, and DE 107) are supporting recovery missions in affected states through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact.
U.S. Small Business Administration
- SBA opened 4 more Business Recovery Centers in the following New Jersey counties: Atlantic, Union, Cape May and Passaic, for a total of ten (10) BRCs in the state of New Jersey. SBA teams will help with the needs of small agriculture cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private non-profit organizations. In addition SBA offers economic injury loans to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster. Hours of operation are from 9:00am to 5:00pm; Monday – Friday, unless otherwise posted.
- In addition to representation in all DRCs and MDRCs, the SBA has Business Recovery Centers in Hackensack, Jersey City, Lincroft, Newark and Piscataway. For more information, call the SBA Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for TTY users) or go to www.sba.gov. The filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is December 31, 2012. The deadline to return economic injury applications is July 31, 2013.
FEMA Key EffortsOperations:
- Operation priorities across the federal response effort continue to focus on providing life sustaining support to the State including sheltering, sheltering-in-place, mass care, medical assistance and commodities for state distribution. FEMA and other Federal partners are also concentrating on providing power generation technical assistance, assessments and installation of generators at critical facilities identified by the State and providing bulk and retail fuel for first responders, critical infrastructure, and the public, and identifying any first responder gaps.
- Children’s Task Force first meeting was held Nov. 13 in Trenton. Key Task Force members are NJ Dept. of Education, DCF. FEMA provides coordination and technical assistance to the Task Force. Task Force will focus on infant and toddler support in shelters, making sure children, especially children with functional and accessibility needs, are accommodated and can remain in school during the disaster response. As the operations transition to recovery, they will also address rehabilitation of damaged or destroyed schools.
- State/FEMA Housing Assessment Teams are calling commercial mobile home parks in Atlantic, Bergen, Cape May, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, and Union Counties. Calls are identifying pad size, availability and utility connections.
- As of Tuesday, Nov. 13, 61,580 flood insurance claims were made in New Jersey.
- On November 15th, 2012 FEMA will deploy three (3) Pre-Mitigation Assessment Teams (MATs) that will conduct advanced reconnaissance in areas most significantly impacted by Hurricane Sandy. This reconnaissance or “Pre-MAT” will confirm potential sites for detailed forensic engineering by a full Mitigation Assessment Team. The activity of the Pre-MAT is closely coordinated with the JFO’s Hazard Mitigation (HM) Branch, Hazards and Performance Analysis (HPA) Group. Upon completion of the Pre-MAT, (November 18, 2012) the Team Lead will brief the HM Branch on its findings.
- FEMA Public Assistance and state emergency managers completed a second day of Applicant Briefings. Five were held today for the counties of Sussex, Passaic, Ocean and Monmouth, with state officials meeting at the New Jersey Regional Operations and Intelligence Center. Local government officials may turn in their Request for Public Assistance (RPA) at the Applicant Briefings. FEMA officials accelerated the reimbursement process by conducting Kickoff Meetings with state and local government officials immediately following the Applicant Briefings. Normally, Kickoff meetings are held within 21 days of an Applicant Briefing or receiving a RPA.
- Four more Applicant Briefings will be held Thursday. Friday is the final day when four are scheduled for a total of 17. All 21 counties in New Jersey will have been represented in these meetings