New Jersey Governor Chris Christie intends to shuffle some of the federal Sandy relief funds set aside for small businesses and direct that money toward homeowners.
Over the summer, Christie said the small-business grant program was being underused and encouraged more businesses to apply. Now he wants to take $145 million out of that grant program and move it into the pool of money available to help homeowners rebuild and stay in their communities.
Unlike the business grants, there have been more homeowners seeking rebuilding assistance than there is available funding. Moving this money will provide grants to roughly 10 percent of the 8,700 families still on the waiting list for the state’s largest grant program, which pays out up to $150,000 for home repairs.
In addition to funding for homeowners, Christie wants to set aside $15 million for demolition of Sandy-damaged structures.