Obama: $1 billion in Sandy relief money to be diverted to other disasters as part of national competition
ORTLEY BEACH - Jersey Shore residents and business owners say they are outraged at news that nearly $1 billion in remaining Sandy aid will go to other parts of the country.
President Obama's National Disaster Resilience Competition will allow communities throughout the country that have had major disasters in recent years to vie for federal grants remaining in the Sandy relief package. The president says it will make our nation better prepared for future disasters.
Anna Alio lives and works at the shore where devastation still exists 20 months after Superstorm Sandy. Her boss at Johnny Fries in Ortley Beach never got grant money to rebuild after 6-foot floods crippled his business.
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"I believe people here should get the money instead of people across the country being able to apply for it," Alio says. "That doesn't make any sense."
Nearby in the Vision Beach community in Ortley Beach, property owners share similar frustrations. The neighborhood still lacks much of its infrastructure and homes still remain destroyed.
"It's a year and half later and it still looks like a bomb hit it," says Jane Bishop. "So, I really think it should be spent here."
Several state senators are urging Congress to prohibit these Sandy funds from being diverted to projects in other parts of the country. Meanwhile, Obama says New Jersey and New York can compete in this contest for about $180 million of it.