In the first nine months since Superstorm Sandy hit towns, millions have been doled out to offset costs of cleanup and removal in some of the hardest hit areas, but area officials say the funds are not getting here fast enough.
The state Office of Emergency Management, which has been distributing the federal money to municipalities throughout the state, recently reported figures that cover payments to municipalities, other public entities and some eligible private companies statewide through July 30.
The figures are actual dollars received by municipalities to cover emergency costs, not requests made or applications still in the pipeline, OEM officials said Tuesday.
But while the aid money is welcome, it’s a drop in the bucket compared to what towns have spent cleaning up from the October storm, officials said.
For example, Point Beach has received about $2.6 million so far. But, "we've spent roughly $9 million so far," said Point Pleasant Beach Mayor Vincent Barrella.
The bulk of many municipalities' disbursements have been to offset costs of debris removal. But while many cash-strapped counties and municipalities along the Shore had to deal with the emergency immediately, the reimbursement process has been less quick, officials said.
"We couldn’t wait to have debris removed," said Colleen Connelly, Belmar’s borough administrator “We couldn’t wait to put extra protections in place, we’ve had to deal with the situation in real time."
Line items represent payment for specific requests for itemized claims listed in the full report, which can be found by clicking here.
Here is the list of payments received by Howell and Farmingdale as of July 30:
- Howell - $656,250
- Howell Township Fire District #2 - $9,425.95
- Howell Township Board Of Education - $22,339.22
- Howell Township Board Of Education - $54.52
- Howell Township Board Of Education - $997.78
- Howell - $66,720.57
- Howell First Aid Squad - $5,864.93
- Howell - $2,887.50
- Farmingdale - $2,448
- Farmingdale - $13,497.20