People Hard Hit By Sandy
Say Christie Administration Has Failed
In commemoration of the first anniversary of Sandy, the Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey (the Network) released “We are the Sandy 75%”, a compilation of messages from people impacted by Sandy and the organizations fighting for a fair recovery.
On the one year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy, a Monmouth University poll shows that 75% of New Jerseyans severely impacted by Sandy say that the Christie Administration’s recovery has failed them. Their message to the Governor: The Christie Administration’s approach to recovery is not working and major changes are needed.
Below is a sample of the quotes that the Network included:
“The Christie Administration spent $25 million on ‘Stronger than the Storm’ ads, but next to nothing on telling people who live at the Shore, or anywhere else in NJ, how to get help. Neither homeowners nor renters are getting the help they need to navigate the State’s confusing programs with ever-changing rules. New Jersey residents deserve better,” said Staci Berger, Executive Director of the Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey (HCDNNJ). HCDNNJ works with community organizations assisting residents impacted by Hurricane Sandy everyday.
“The recovery is going pretty well for out-of-state consultants making millions of dollars off of state contracts. But average New Jerseyans affected by Sandy overwhelmingly are not benefiting from the Christie Administration’s recovery,” siad Adam Gordon, Staff Attorney with Fair Share Housing Center (FSHC). FSHC sued the Christie Administration last month over the lack of transparency regarding where federal money is going.
“The Stronger NJ Business Grant Program is an administrative nightmare. The documents they ask for are overwhelming and they don’t have the staff capacity to work with you. When Christie says that businesses aren’t applying for money that is bull. They have designed a program that is almost impossible to use,” sid Kristen Scalia, Jersey City business owner (NJ Citizen Action’s Main Street Alliance). Scalia’s business was flooded with four feet of water and lost all of its inventory, yet has not been able to access a single dollar of recovery funds from the Christie Administration.
“It looks good in a headline to say all this money is there but no one is seeing a dime. It’s a mess where everyone is stuck. There are lots of homes in my neighborhood that are vacant because of Sandy and rotting away. They are full of black mold and I’m afraid down the line people are going to get lung cancer because of this,” said Simone Dannecker, homeowner from Union Beach facing foreclosure from a predatory loan.
Click here for the Network’s press release.