Sandy Help Moving Slowly [VIDEO/AUDIO]
Help is still in short supply for those hoping to rebuild their lives, nearly 18 months since Superstorm Sandy made landfall in New Jersey.
Figures from the Christie administration show that the number of homeowners who remain on the waitlist for the primary assistance grant is greater than the number of homeowners who've actually benefited from it.
More than 5,400 Sandy-impacted homeowners have been awarded a preliminary grant through the Reconstruction, Rehabilitation, Elevation & Mitigation (RREM) Program. Approximately 6,400, though, are still waiting to get their names pulled off the list.
Gov. Chris Christie has indicated many times that there won't be enough money to go around. Sandy caused nearly $37 billion in damage, but the state should receive a total of $15 to 20 billion from the federal government.
"We're still working off the original $1.8 billion that they gave us," Christie said at his town hall Thursday in Brick. "We're waiting for the federal government to approve our plan for the next $1.4 billion."
Christie indicated his administration expects approval by the end of May. A large chunk of the funding would go straight to RREM and assist approximately 3,000 homeowners.
Greater success has been tallied with the Homeowner Resettlement Program, funded through the federal aid package. More than 18,200 Sandy-affected families have received a $10,000 grant to remain in their home counties.