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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

State Explains Why It Reneged on Shoreline Storm Aid

By Jan Ellen Spiegel

www.ctmirror.org

About a half-dozen shoreline communities have learned that none of their residents whose homes were damaged by Storm Sandy will be able to sell them back to the government or receive hazard-mitigation funds to elevate the structures.

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Westport’s letter of protest:  applicants “deserve an explanation why they were never considered, and in fact mislead about the prospect of receiving aid.” Click here for full letter. Contributed photo

The state Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security has sent out letters explaining that this decision was made because applications totaled nearly five times the amount of money available.

After a committee reviewed and ranked four categories of applications, it decided to use all the available money for infrastructure projects. “The committee felt that infrastructure would provide the greatest benefit to the most number of people given the limited funds,” division spokesman Scott DeVico said.

A total of $16.6 million was available through the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, which is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for infrastructure repairs, home elevations, property buyouts and generators. This particular pot of money covered damages from storm Sandy and the February 2013 blizzard. There had been an earlier pot of money, $8.7 million, pegged to damage from Tropical Storm Irene.

Click here for more of story

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