WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez tonight released the following statement in reaction to 11th-hour decisions by both the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) ahead of the 9:00 p.m. deadline to enroll in FEMA’s Sandy Claims Review:

“I'm pleased to announce that FEMA has heeded our calls and agreed to extend the deadline for Sandy survivors to have their flood insurance claims reviewed to ensure they get every penny they're entitled to.

“Once I exposed that underpayments were widespread and systemic, I insisted FEMA give everyone who filed a claim after Sandy a second chance to get what they deserve. As a result, New Jersey families are getting real money – in some cases tens of thousands of dollars – that they never would have seen had FEMA not acted.

“I promised to hold FEMA’s feet to the fire and ensure the process was fair and not a repeat of the first attempt. This 30-day extension will help keep that promise and give Sandy survivors the time they need to understand the rules, opt-in and have their claims reviewed.

“I'm also pleased to announce that HUD has agreed to waive any duplication of benefits that results from additional insurance funds under $20,000. I first raised this issue months ago at the Sandy Task Force hearing and commend HUD for exercising its discretion and providing relief for Sandy survivors.

“We still have a lot of work to do before we are fully recovered, but tonight is a good night for those still struggling to rebuild.”