Cranford Awarded $4.2 Million In Post-Irene FEMA Aid
The township will be able to complete nearly 30 projects with the help of federal funding.
The Christie Administration has announced that Cranford has been approved for nearly $4.1 million in FEMA Public Assistance Program funding, as a result of infrastructure and public property damage incurred from Hurricane Irene.
“We continue to work with our federal partners to insure full recovery in New Jersey communities impacted by Hurricane Irene,” Gov. Chris Christie said in a press release. “Having the appropriate mechanisms in place to successfully secure these disaster grants allows us to more efficiently assist municipalities and ease the burden of recovery costs on local taxpayers.”
Cranford is set to receive over $1.5 million for nearly 30 projects. The township is being reimbursed for the costs of debris clearance, emergency protective measures, road and public building repair.
The Cranford Public School District has been approved for more than $2.6 million to offset costs related to 13 projects, mostly repairs from flood damage to school buildings.
When Hurricane Irene struck New Jersey, the Rahway River overflowed in Cranford Township, causing extensive flood damage at nearby Brookside Elementary School, where flood waters reached up to two feet. These funds will reimburse the township for repairs made following the hurricane, including flood water removal and remediation, repairs for damaged pipes and walls, and restoration of damaged items inside the school.
As a result of the damage, School officials were forced to close the building and send students to other schools in the district, as well as Washington Elementary School in Garwood. The school reopened on Feb. 27.
Hurricane Irene struck New Jersey on Aug. 27, resulting in a Presidential Disaster Declaration on Aug. 31. More than 4,500 local government expense project reimbursements were submitted to the Federal Emergency Management Agency through the NJ Office of Emergency Management. To date, the two areas of expenses designated to receive the most funding from Irene are emergency protective measures and debris removal.
According to the Mayor's Council on Rahway River Flood Control, new estimates of the damages brought by Hurricane Irene now are in excess of $60 million well above earlier estimates as residents and businesses have finalized damage claims. While the financial impacts are significant, other impacts from family burdens to property value losses remain serious concerns. Some residents are just now returning to their homes.
The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management works with FEMA, providing technical assistance to applicants. The Federal Emergency Management Agency approves the reimbursement of local government expenses, which provide at least 75 percent of the eligible costs of repair and replacement to those who qualify. The State of New Jersey is accountable for use of the funds and is responsible for disbursing the funds.
For detailed information regarding FEMA’s Public Assistance Program, go to:
NJ Hurricane Irene Page: http://www.fema.gov/news/event.fema?id=15536
For information concerning Irene Public Assistance Applicants, and funds disbursed, visit the NJOEM website at www.ready.nj.gov and click on “Disaster Public Assistance”.
Note: Hurricane Irene was characterized as a tropical storm by the National Weather Service in an after-action review several months after the event. The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Presidential Disaster Declaration referred to in this media release is for “Hurricane Irene.”