FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Christie Administration Announces Post-Sandy Planning Grant to Rumson Borough

Grant Will Help Sandy-Impacted Local Government with
Long-Term Recovery and Resiliency Planning



Trenton, NJ – New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Richard E. Constable, III today announced the award of a $255,000 Post-Sandy Planning Assistance Grant to Rumson, Monmouth County, to put into effect comprehensive long-range plans designed to enable the Borough to become resilient in the event of future significant weather events.

This is the second Post-Sandy Planning Grant that Rumson received. The Borough was awarded its first planning grant in October 2013, and used the $19,000 grant to complete a Strategic Recovery Planning Report, which serves as the Borough’s comprehensive guide for seven recovery and resiliency projects funded by the second grant.

“We applaud Rumson for being proactive in planning for the long-term and developing ways to make their community better able to withstand potential future natural disasters,” said Commissioner Constable, whose Department is administering many of the Sandy Recovery programs for the State. “As one of the first local governments to be awarded Phase 2 planning grants, Rumson has demonstrated its commitment to finding solutions to the very specific challenges they are facing.”

Located on the Navesink River and located largely within a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) flood zone, Rumson experiences frequent flooding due to tidal flows and rainfall. However, Superstorm Sandy caused severe damage throughout the Borough. Approximately one-quarter of all residential homes sustained major or severe damage. Commercial buildings also sustained damage and numerous pump stations and generators failed.

The Borough’s Strategic Recovery Planning Report identified seven planning projects, which are:

• Update its Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP) that will identify and assess the various flooding hazards within the Borough, as well as the associated vulnerabilities to those hazards. The HMP will also identify alternative mitigation actions that can be implemented to reduce the Borough’s risks resulting from exposure to flooding hazards.
• Increase the efficiency and quality of the Borough’s permit and application process by going through a detailed review of its workflow and automating the process.
• Prepare a Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) to focus municipal capital investments on public facilities, vehicle fleets and equipment to build community resiliency in plants and equipment, such as raising generators above flood hazard elevations and developing contingency plans for storing and moving rolling stock.
• Develop a Geographic Information System (GIS) to enable the Borough to better prepare for, respond to and recover from disasters.
• Amend key elements of the Borough’s Master Plan to address post-Sandy strategies and policies related to hazard mitigation and community resiliency with up-to-date mapping of current land uses, new FEMA floodplain and wetland mapping, critical community facilities, and important natural resources areas.
• Prepare an update to the Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) to focus on any special planning needs generated by a hurricane or severe flooding scenario that will contain unique and regulatory responses associated with extreme flooding.
• Prepare a Floodplain Management Plan (FMP) to identify and assess flood hazards, establish the goals and objectives for floodplain management, and present a series of actions designed to minimize flooding and mitigate the impacts from flooding in the future. 

The Post-Sandy Planning Assistance Grants are funded through Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery monies provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The $5 million program is available to each of the nine counties most impacted by Sandy as determined by HUD (Atlantic, Bergen, Cape May, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean and Union) and all of the municipalities within those counties that have experienced a ratable loss of at least 1% or $1 million due to the storm.

Applications for grants are still being accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis by the DCA’s Office of Local Planning Services, which is administering the program, until all funds are exhausted.

For more information on Post-Sandy Planning Assistance Grants, go to http://www.nj.gov/dca/services/lps/pspag.html.