Washington - In response to recent torrential rainfall which caused severe flooding in several New Jersey communities, U.S. Senator Robert Menendez today asked Governor Chris Christie to move as quickly as possible to formally request a disaster declaration for the most severely affected counties in the state. This declaration will make New Jersey eligible for Federal Emergency Management Assistance (FEMA) to those hardest hit communities.
The full text of Senator Menendez's letter to Governor Christie follows:
August 16, 2011
The Honorable Chris Christie
State of New Jersey
PO Box 001
Trenton, NJ 08625
Dear Governor Christie:
With a number of New Jersey communities affected by this week's flooding, I am writing to urge you to move as quickly as possible to formally request a disaster declaration for the most severely affected counties in the state. This will make New Jersey eligible for federal assistance to the communities and first responders which have incurred significant flooding over the past weekend.
Some areas, such as Pittsgrove Township and Bridgeton were inundated with up to eleven inches of precipitation, causing millions of dollars in damage to roads, bridges, and other infrastructure critical to an effective emergency response. While our brave local first responders have been working around the clock to ensure the safety and health of residents, these small communities simply do not have the resources to fully address all of the damage.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is designed to assist states, communities, and residents with rebuilding after a disaster strikes. In the case of a presidentially declared disaster, FEMA provides both public and individual assistance that gets businesses and communities back on their feet and helps evacuated families find a temporary place to live. As you know, the first step in this process is your formal request of a disaster declaration from the President. I encourage you to make this request as soon as possible and look forward to supporting New Jersey's submission to help the victims of this flood.
Thank you for considering my request. I am eager to work with you to ensure New Jerseyans receive all of the federal assistance they deserve.
United States Senator