WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today announced he is making an additional $10 million in quick release emergency relief funds immediately available to New Jersey to continue to repair damage caused by Hurricane Sandy.
“President Obama has said we need to do all we can to help communities recover from Hurricane Sandy,” said LaHood. “These emergency relief funds represent another down payment, and we will continue to help until transportation is completely restored in the region.”
“This funding is another recognition and acknowledgement of the extent of damage inflicted by Hurricane Sandy and the uphill climb to recovery we still face,” said Gov. Chris Christie. “Moreover, it’s a statement of the critical importance of New Jersey’s transportation system, not just to our state but also the region, and the need to restore our infrastructure as quickly as possible. That is a message we will continue to press in concert with our partners in the region, Congress, and the federal government as we seek the appropriate level of disaster funding for New Jersey and its residents.”
The $10 million for New Jersey brings the state’s total to $20 million in quick release funds. With today’s release, the Department of Transportation has approved a total of $59 million so far for Hurricane Sandy recovery: $20 million for New Jersey; $30 million for New York; $2 million for Connecticut; $3 million for Rhode Island; and $4 million for North Carolina.
Quick release emergency funds provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) are used for a variety of repairs to roads, bridges and tunnels that are immediately necessary. New Jersey will repair roadways and bridges—work that is imperative to get ready for the 2013 beach season, which is a huge economic generator for the state.
“New Jersey can rely on us during this difficult time,” said Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez. “We will continue to provide support and financial assistance during the region’s ongoing recovery.”
FHWA’s emergency relief program provides funds for the repair or reconstruction of federal-aid roads and bridges damaged by natural disasters or catastrophic events. Restoring critical infrastructure is essential to enabling first responders and relief workers to access impacted communities and to quickly restoring services to impacted residents.