The county will receive $250,000 out of a total of $2.8 million distributed throughout the state, the Christie Administration announced on Wednesday.
“With the destruction of Superstorm Sandy still fresh in our minds, now is an ideal time to consider how we can be better prepared in the future,” Gov. Chris Christie said. “These hazard mitigation plans will help county officials apply lessons learned from Sandy to their long-term planning to make their towns more resilient.”
The grants are for renewing hazard mitigation plans, and will enable counties to build on planning activities funded by New Jersey under the Community Disaster Block Grant – Disaster Relief (CDBG-DR) program.
The Christie Administration sees the effort as part of a long-term hazard mitigation plan, designed to aid projects that are already taking place. These projects include home elevations, buyouts, and beach restoration and protection projects.
“The county hazard mitigation plans are a critical step in helping communities prevent future damage,” Superintendent of New Jersey State Police Colonel Rick Fuentes said. “By taking decisive action now, we can save lives and avoid property damage in the future.”
Hazard mitigation grants are awarded by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) after a state suffers from a declared disaster.
The $250,000 represents 75 percent of FEMA’s share of project costs. Funds are aimed at helping counties better prepare for storms and accomplish goals, which include the following:
* Reducing harm to existing structures and infrastructure, as well as future development;
* Protecting public safety and preventing loss of life and injury;
* Preventing damage to New Jersey’s unique economic, cultural and environmental assets;
* Minimizing operational downtime and accelerating recovery of government and businesses after future disasters;
* Utilizing an open public involvement process, including seeking input from a wide range of stakeholders that have a signification role in plan implementation;
* Improving public understanding of risks and options to reduce the effects of natural disasters; and
* Reducing the cost of disaster response and the exposure to risk for first responders.