Although we have made great strides in rebuilding New Jersey in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, we still have a long way to go to make our communities and small businesses whole again. I want to make sure you are aware of several new programs funded by the federal Sandy Relief Package that have been rolled out to assist you in storm recovery.
$300 million in federal funding has been made available to give homeowners the option of selling their properties damaged by Hurricane Sandy in tidal areas of New Jersey. The buyout program will fund the purchase of approximately 1,000 homes impacted by Sandy, in addition to another 300 repetitively flood-damaged homes located in the Passaic River Basin that have had longstanding flood problems will also be eligible to be purchased.
Homeowners interested in selling their homes through this process also may contact the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Blue Acres Program at 609-984-0500 or visit https://www.state.nj.us/dep/greenacres/blue_flood_ac.html.
Federally-funded grants are available to homeowners who were impacted by Hurricane Sandy through the reNew Jersey Stronger grant program. Eligible homeowners can apply for both of the following programs:
Homeowner Resettlement: This program provides a $10,000 grant award to eligible homeowners whose primary residence was damaged by Hurricane Sandy. This program requires you to remain in or return to Sandy impacted communities.
Homeowner Reconstruction, Rehabilitation, Elevation and Mitigation (RREM): This program provides up to $150,000 for eligible Homeowners to repair, elevate or rebuild their primary residences in the affected communities.
For additional information on this program, visit https://renewjerseystronger.org/ or call 1-(855)-SANDYHM.
Applications are being accepted for Stronger NJ Business Grants, a federally-funded program that will provide flexible capital to eligible small businesses and non-profits to enable them to resume or continue activity and remain viable as the State’s recovery progresses. Assistance will be provided to qualifying businesses and non-profits in the form of a grant or a one-year forgivable loan.
The program will provide up to $50,000 per eligible impacted location. Business co-ops and businesses with multiple locations under one employer identification number may be eligible for an award greater than $50,000, but no more than $250,000. Funds may be used to cover unmet needs, including working capital, equipment, fixtures, furnishings, machinery and prospective construction.
For additional information on this program, visit EDA’s website at https://application.njeda.com/strongernjbusinessgrant or call 1 (855) Sandy-BZ (1-855-726-3929).
Beginning in July, the Stronger NJ Business Loan Program will offer direct, low-cost loans of up to $5 million to businesses and non-profits that suffered physical damage, as well as to businesses looking to expand within storm-impacted communities. You can sign up for updates on this program at https://application.njeda.com/strongernjbusiness/ .
Additional information on Hurricane Sandy can be found here https://www.nj.gov/dep/special/hurricane-sandy/ .