Shortly after Point Beach announced it had not received a dime of FEMA money, FEMA announced it's sending the oceanfront town $2.1 million to help pay for the rebuilding of its Sandy-ravaged boardwalk.
Eight days after Point Beach officials at a council meeting bemoaned the lack of cash flowing from FEMA, FEMA made its announcement.
On Wednesday afternoon, U.S. Senators Frank R. Lautenberg and Robert Menendez (both D-NJ) today announced that Point Pleasant Beach will receive more than $2.1 million to reimburse the town for the cost of repairing and rebuilding the boardwalk.
The allocation reimburses the town for 75 percent of its written request to FEMA for the cost of the boardwalk repairs and rebuilding, said Point Beach Business Administrator Chris Riehl on Thursday morning.
"According to Point Pleasant Beach Mayor Vincent Barrella, most of the boardwalk opened this past weekend, with all of it expected to open by Memorial Day Weekend," says a prepared statement from the federal lawmakers. "The federal funding in this grant, which totals $2,128,732.50, is provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Public Assistance program"
“When Superstorm Sandy tore through Point Pleasant Beach, it devastated a critical part of New Jersey’s tourist economy and an area that is home to millions of great memories. This federal funding will reimburse the town for its swift work to rebuild the legendary boardwalk, and thanks to that work, people can now return and enjoy its beauty and attractions,” said Senator Lautenberg, a member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security, which funds FEMA. “However more work remains as many New Jersey and Point Pleasant Beach families are still rebuilding their lives, and we’ll keep fighting to make sure they get all they need to recover.”
“Superstorm Sandy challenged New Jersey communities like Point Pleasant Beach like never before. As the summer tourist season approaches, this federal funding is critical to helping Point Pleasant recoup some of the expenses associated with responding to the storm,” said Senator Menendez, who helped lead the New Jersey delegation’s fight for federal Sandy relief. “There are still many challenges to face on the road to full recovery. That’s why I will continue fighting for the federal resources we need to help all New Jersey communities rebuild even better and stronger than before the storm.”
n January, the President signed the Superstorm Sandy Supplemental Appropriations bill into law, bringing the total Sandy aid enacted by Congress to $60.2 billion. The funding package included federal aid to help homeowners, businesses, and communities recover, and resources to rebuild coastal, transportation, and water infrastructure.
Public Assistance grants are awarded by FEMA on a rolling basis after receiving applications from the state, which coordinates the process with local governments.