FEMA won’t help South Jersey homeowners hard hit by June 30 storm

FEMA says it will not provide aid to homeowners for damage sustained during the June 30 storm that pummeled South Jersey.

Vincent Jones of Atlantic County’s Office of Emergency says that storm’s damage, which knocked out power to many for a week, was big even by coastal New Jersey standards.

“I could tell you just driving around this morning there are still a lot of homes in the different municipalities that still have trees leaning against the houses, trees that are still down in yards, fences that are damaged, sidewalks that are ripped up and damaged,” Jones said Friday.

Things didn’t look as bad to FEMA.

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“Unfortunately, there was not enough damage to warrant individual assistance from FEMA’s perspective,” says Phyllis Deroian, the agency’s regional external affairs officer.

Governments officials in Atlantic, Cumberland and Salem counties learned in July that they would receive money for cleanup costs, but individual assistance has now been denied for all three.

Atlantic County’s Office of Emergency Preparedness would like to appeal the decision. Its counterpart in Cumberland County is still considering its options.

The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management says an appeal will be under consideration as the state undertakes a second review of the damage.

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