Update on Storm Recovery Efforts & Information
The MTA/NJ is continuing its efforts to support recreational marine businesses impacted by Hurricane Sandy and address the challenges the industry is facing. Once again there is much to report on so please take a moment to read this important update. Please also be sure to visit the MTA/NJ Hurricane Sandy page on the website as the page is continually updated with new information.
As we have been reporting, much work is underway to clean up the waterways of storm debris and shoaling. There have been some recent events and important meetings that we wanted to update everyone on.
The MTA/NJ participated in a meeting at the DEP in which a detailed update was provided on the work that is underway. The following is an overview of the information provided at the meeting:
- The State of New Jersey has awarded three contracts to companies who will remove Sandy-related, FEMA-eligible debris from waters of the State in the 11 Debris Management Zones. Click here to view the zones.
- The areas where debris has been identified was determined by reconnaissance conducted by State personnel as well as reports from FEMA, municipalities, counties and residents. Additional reconnaissance will be conducted by the contractors to further identify debris and sand deposits. The MTA/NJ has also provided information to the DEP and DOT to assist in this effort.
The areas where the contractors are operating are within the waters of the State of New Jersey. This includes (without limitation): bays, tidal rivers, and those tidal waterways affected by the storm, including marina basins.
|Waterway Debris Removal has already begun as you can see by this photo taken near the Mantoloking Bridge today, March 5th.|
- The materials that are being removed through this effort must be FEMA eligible. The best source of information on FEMA eligibility is this FEMA guidance document.
- In addition to the contractors that have been hired, the DOT Office of Maritime Resources is surveying State navigation channels. This work has already begun. DOT is using side scan sonar to identify debris areas including new shoals.
Last week, Executive Director Melissa Danko met with members of the Governor's Office of Recovery & Rebuilding including Amy Cradic, Senior Policy Adviser for the Governor. The meeting went well and many critical issues were discussed including the immediate need for financial assistance for businesses for recovery, the need to restore I BOAT NJ funding, the status of the waterways and the need to communicate that the waterways will be open and accessible this season.
As everyone knows, many boaters are becoming increasingly concerned about the waterways and are unaware of some of the efforts that are underway. The MTA/NJ is already seeing the negative impacts of these fears and is working hard to address these concerns and allay fears. In addition to meeting with the Governor's staff, the MTA/NJ has also been meeting with legislators and state officials urging them to promote all of the work that is being done to clear the waterways and to also ensure that it is completed in time for the boating season. There is a critical need for the Administration to communicate information to the public and to promote boating on the waterways this season. To read correspondence sent from Senator Connors and members of the 9th District to the Governor as a result of the MTA/NJ's meeting, click on the links below:
SPREAD THE WORD: To help spread the word about the work that is being done, a boater update was drafted and distributed to attendees at the New Jersey Boat Sale & Expo. Please feel free to print this flier and distribute to customers. For more information on DEP's Sandy Waterway Debris Resources, click here.
REPORT DEBRIS & SHOALING: Please contact the MTA/NJ immediately (if you have not already done so) to report:
- Dredging that is now needed as a result of the storm- Only storm related needs
- Storm debris in the water in your marina basin and surrounding waterways that is problematic/needs to be removed/is a hazard to navigation
Please provide as much information as possible including location of debris, latitude and longitude. Please also indicate if the debris and/or shoaling is mild, moderate or severe. Please email this information to firstname.lastname@example.org ASAP.
CALL THE GOVERNOR TODAY
Email or call 609-292-6000 the Governor and urge him to support your business and promote that boating is important to the economy and to communicate to the public all of the work that is being done to clear the waterways of storm debris and to ensure it is done in time for the season.
Final Assessment Report
As part of the effort to obtain support and financial assistance for the industry, the MTA/NJ conducted a survey to assess the damages to marinas and recreational boating related businesses impacted by Hurricane Sandy. 676 surveys were mailed to MTA/NJ members, including all marinas throughout the state. The survey was also distributed via email and posted on the MTA/NJ website. 109 businesses completed the survey. Please click here to review the final report. This report is being distributed to key state and federal officials and legislators working on recovery efforts.
FEMA/SBA Deadline Extended 30 Days
As reported, The Christie Administration announced that New Jersey residents and businesses impacted by Superstorm Sandy now have until April 1, 2013 to register for individual disaster assistance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The deadline extension applies for homeowner, renter, and business registration with the Small Business Administration (SBA) for Disaster Loan Assistance, another important step in the disaster relief process to ensure survivors obtain all relief they are eligible for.
It is crucial that businesses and individuals complete the SBA loan application so State officials can continue to compile an accurate, comprehensive picture of the damage and the need for additional disaster recovery assistance. Moreover, for businesses, an SBA Disaster Loan represents the best opportunity for disaster assistance.
Click here to read the full News Release from the Governor.
The MTA/NJ has been made aware that registering for an SBA Disaster Loan is essential if you are looking to later obtain a grant under the Community Development Block Grants. The MTA/NJ is working on obtaining more information on the availability of grants for businesses and will update everyone as soon more information is available.
For more information or to apply, contact the SBA at 1-800-659-2955 or apply online here, Disaster Loan Application.
MTA/NJ Recovery & Relief Fund Update
In December, the Marine Trades Association of New Jersey (MTA/NJ) announced the establishment of its new Recovery & Relief Fund to provide aid to recreational marine businesses impacted by Hurricane Sandy. To read the full news release, click here.
The Fund Board is in the process of establishing an application process for small grants for businesses impacted by the storm. Additional information will be available soon.
Fundraising: Unfortunately The Robin Hood Foundation did not award a grant to the MTA/NJ Fund. However, the MTA/NJ is working to obtain additional funds and is applying to other organizations. The MTA/NJ is also working on an online option to contribute towards the fund. More information on this will be available shortly.
If you wish to donate to the Fund, please make checks payable to MTA/NJ Recovery & Relief Fund and send to:
Marine Trades Association of New Jersey
2516 Highway 35, Suite 201
Manasquan, NJ 08735
MTA/NJ Conference & Expo: Be sure to check out the Schedule of Events for the 2013 MTA/NJ Conference being held on March 14th as many of these Sandy Related Issues will be addressed.