New Jersey Recovery Continues
November 8, 2012
As New Jersey moves forward with recovery efforts from Hurricane Sandy, and hundreds of thousands of families across our 21 counties remain without power, key State and Federal agencies continue to push-out news and updates of interest to NJAA members:
Emergency Assistance and Housing Resources
Anyone displaced by the storm or anyone who has faced a loss should register with FEMA to be able to access key federal resources. Register by phone at 800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 800-462-7585 for those with hearing or speech impairments. Specialists are standing by at the toll-free numbers seven days a week, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time, until further notice. Help in languages other than English is available. Or you can register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov. You can also apply through a web-enabled mobile device or smartphone by visiting http://m.fema.gov/ and following the link to "apply online for federal assistance." All twenty-one (21)New Jersey counties have been declared eligible for disaster assistance.
Temporary housing is available through a Transitional Sheltering Assistance (TRA) program that will house those whose primary residence is inaccessible or unlivable due to damage or loss of power. The period of assistance will run between November 1st through November 14th. Additionally, FEMA is looking to relocate residents into rental apartments. If you have available units, please contact the NJAA at 732-992-0600 or by e-mail to Jean Maddalon at firstname.lastname@example.org. FEMA's Housing Portal can be accessed by clicking here.
Small Business Recovery Conference call: FEMA/US-ASBA/NJ-EDA/NJ-BAC
Governor Chris Christie is pleased to offer small business owners the opportunity to join Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), New Jersey Economic Development Authority and New Jersey Business Action Center senior officials for a conference call on the federal and state government's efforts to help small businesses and homeowners recover from Hurricane Sandy. Officials will provide updates and answer questions about assistance and support to states affected by the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, ensuring the federal family and its public and private partners continue to provide all available resources to support state, local, territorial and tribal communities in affected areas.
WHAT: NJ Economic Development Authority, FEMA, SBA and New Jersey Business Action Center senior officials update call with local, small business owners and officials on Sandy relief efforts.
WHEN: Thursday, November 8 at 2 p.m. ET
DIAL IN: Dial-in: 1-888-621-9649; Event number: 411483
Statewide & Local Water Restrictions Remain
Governor Christie has asked residents and businesses statewide to take immediate measures to avoid all unnecessary water use. With many water treatment and wastewater facilities operating on backup power, it is essential that all New Jerseyans take measured steps to conserve potable water. The Governor's executive order prohibits many activites and businesses should be aware of the restrictions and exemptions.
Click here for the Governor's "State of Water Emergency" Executive Order.
Residents and businesses in the 36 towns served by the Middlesex County Utilities Authority's (MCUA) wastewater treatment system are advised to further minimize water use to reduce stress on the storm-damaged sewage treatment system and help limit polluting effluent now flowing into the Raritan River and Raritan Bay.
The following towns are served by the MCUA: Bound Brook, Bridgewater, Carteret, Cranbury, Dunellen, East Brunswick, Edison, Fanwood, Franklin Township, Green Brook, Helmetta, Highland Park, Jamesburg, Metuchen, Middlesex Borough, Milltown, Monroe Township, New Brunswick, North Brunswick, North Plainfield, Old Bridge, Perth Amboy, Piscataway, Plainfield, Sayreville, Scotch Plains, South Amboy, South Bound Brook, South Brunswick, South Plainfield, South River, Spotswood, Warren Township, Watchung and Woodbridge.
NJDEP: Department Issues Administrative Order on Reconstruction Permitting
DEP Commissioner Bob Martin recognizes there was significant damage to certain public infrastructure from Hurricane Sandy and an economic burden on public agencies to submit permit applications to the DEP for repair or replacement of the damaged structures. Therefore, on November 3 the Commissioner issued Administrative Order (AO) #2012-13, exempting State, County and Municipal agencies from DEP's formal permit procedures for a specific category of emergency activities relative to public infrastructure. This Administrative Order applies only to damage resulting from Hurricane Sandy.
The Administrative Order provides for emergency activities that public agencies have completed or need to complete as outlined below:
- In-kind repair or in-kind replacement of certain public infrastructure (public roadways, railroads, culverts, bridges, utility lines, outfall structures, stormwater management structures, bulkheads and other similar shore-line stabilization structures).
- Repair of scoured areas directly adjacent to a bridge, culvert or public roadway. The scope of repair is limited to that area which has recently washed away.
- Repair and reconstruction of a public roadway including the stabilization or re-construction of the road-bed and associated embankments.
The AO does not provide for emergency activities to be performed outside the footprint of the legally pre-existing structure. That is, "in-kind repair or replacement" does not include a re-designed bridge or culvert that is hydraulically different from the original structure. Furthermore, the AO does not provide for new stream bank stabilization projects such as hard armoring or rip-rap or for stream cleaning projects.
To qualify under the Administrative Order, State, County and Municipal agencies must submit a comprehensive inventory including locations and photographs of qualifying public infrastructure damaged by Hurricane Sandy within 180 days of the effective date of this Administrative Order. That deadline is May 1, 2013. Provided the projects comply with the requirements of the AO, DEP will then provide written approval of the inventory. Within 60 days of completing all projects on its approved inventory, the State, County or Municipal agency is responsible for submitting a final certified inventory, with before and after photographs and a description of the repair or replacement activity. The AO shall remain in effect until such time as the state of emergency declared by Executive Order 104 has concluded unless the AO is previously rescinded. For a copy of the Administrative Order, please click here.
- November 3, 2012: Administrative Order No. 2012-13 is issued
- May 1, 2013: Deadline for State, County and Municipal agencies to submit comprehensive inventories
- 60 Days after Completing All Projects on DEP-approved Inventories: Deadline for State, County and Municipal agencies to submit final certified inventories
The NJAA will continue to monitor alerts and announcements from key Federal, State, and County agencies in the days and weeks ahead. You can also check for updates at www.ready.nj.gov. For many New Jersey families, recovery from Hurricane Sandy will be slow and may take several months - especially for those in hardest hit areas across our state. New Jersey has faced many challenges since our founding in 1702, and we shall overcome this latest one as well. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Association HQ at 732-992-0600.