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Christie: Don't Wait to Elevate, Rebuild; Grant Money on the Way

Governor: Don't listen to 'dopes' saying to hold off

Gov. Chris Christie took a stand this week against public officials and community leaders calling on residents to wait for potential changes to Federal Emergency Management Agency flood maps before elevating or rebuilding their homes in the wake of Superstorm Sandy. 

Christie, speaking in Lavallette Tuesday, said the state's adoption of FEMA's advisory base flood elevation maps last month will ensure residents build smarter and stronger, and avoid the consequences that came in Sandy's storm surge.

"Fight away, I'm fighting too, but don't tell people not to rebuild their homes if they want to," said Christie.

"Don't we want people in safer homes and more resilient homes?"

Some have called on residents to wait for FEMA to put out revised, preliminary maps this summer before they raise their homes, since those maps may rezone certain neighborhoods and scale back the type of construction or height needed to comply in order to receive affordable flood insurance rates.

But Christie said waiting could cost residents the chance to score grants that could help pay for house raising, at least for primary residents.

The governor said Tuesday that a grant program funded by the federal government could be in place at the state level as early as late March.

"We want people to make a commitment to stay in these communities," he said, and residents deserve a "helping hand."

The grants will come in the form of Community Development Block Grants.

One of the largest ever single allocations of CDBG funds – $17 billion – was included in the federal Sandy relief package passed by congress and signed by President Barack Obama.

Christie said the CDBG funding will be for primary residents only.

Dominick Palermo February 22, 2013 at 09:13 PM
Commonman---------Is right in a way ---------- If you live 50 ft from the ocean ----Damn good chance your going to be flooded out in a major storm -----------Hey we all want to live close to the beach --but how close is close ?If you choose to live that close where you are flooded ----Well its kinda on you ------- I choose to live 4 miles from the beach on a hill --so i know i wont be flooded
commonman February 22, 2013 at 09:50 PM
Thank u Dominick Palermo that's the point I want a water view but not worth the risk at some point people have to take responsiblity for there decisions and I truly feel for those affected but if they don't learn from this I can't wont and don't want to help them
Bob February 22, 2013 at 10:16 PM
You are missing many points. 1st he is not guarantying each homeowner will get a grant. Second, if you go from a V to an A you can elevate on block foundations giving you an enclosed garage rather than on open pilings. Third, some that did not flood will not have to elevate if they get rezoned back out of A. Fourth if you cannot move your home to put pilings in and you are in a V zone you have no choice but to wait to get rezoned to an A otherwise you have to demolish & build new & certainly he is not giving enough money to do this. These are only 4 points. Have governator answer those 4 as reasons not to wait and I will start building tomorrow.
commonman February 26, 2013 at 01:34 PM
Gov. Cuomo said yesterday that 169 of 192 residents of Staten Island’s storm devastated Oakwood Beach have taken him up on his offer to buy out their Sandy-ravaged homes. The people who live in the battered neighborhood have been enticed by a deal that will pay them 100 percent of their damaged home’s prestorm market value — plus 5 percent if the homeowners stay on Staten Island, Cuomo said. The feds will pick up 75 percent of the tab. “Let’s build back smarter than before, and let’s do it right,” Cuomo said during a visit Monday to the College of Staten Island. “Let’s also recognize that there are some places that Mother Nature owns.” amen
Martin February 26, 2013 at 04:17 PM
Growing protests to erroneous maps, over-kill elevation mandates and exorbitant insurance costs: ==> http://tomsriver.patch.com/articles/overcrowding-forces-cops-to-halt-stop-fema-now-meeting There will be a DEP public hearing a week from Thursday -- MARCH 7TH in Long Branch (5:30 PM, Municipal Bldg., 344 Broadway) about Gov. Christie's adoption of the FEMA rules. Speak out against the rules that will make tens of thousands abandon their homes and businesses because FEMA made them unaffordable!

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