Taking action to ensure that hard-hit local governments avail themselves and their residents of every avenue of disaster relief available to them for recovery and rebuilding, Governor Chris Christie today signed Executive Order No. 128 requiring every local governmental entity in the state that can meet the eligibility requirements to apply for a FEMA Community Disaster Loan. The order also empowers the Division of Local Government Services within the Department of Community Affairs and the Commissioner of Education the authority to implement the Community Disaster Loan Program in New Jersey and to require application to the program be made by local governments. Every municipality, county, school district, fire district, local authority and every other local governmental entities in New Jersey is subject to this order.
"I take it as an obligation to our storm-impacted residents to ensure that every avenue of relief is pursued to assist in the recovery and rebuilding of our communities," said Governor Christie. "While my Administration and FEMA have each worked aggressively to make communities aware of the availability of Community Disaster Loans, I am unwilling to leave it to chance that every eligible town or school district will apply for this relief. Today, I am taking action to empower our Division of Local Government Services and Department of Education to determine local governments' eligibility and mandate an application to be made for aid under this program, as well as the potential aid under our CDBG Action Plan that may be tied to participation in this program."
FEMA administers a Community Disaster Loan Program that offers resources to local governments that help offset costs incurred from disasters including potential lost revenue and unreimbursed disaster-related expenses on favorable 5-year loan terms tied to the 5-year T-note. With authorization, FEMA can extend the term up to an additional five years based on the recipient's financial condition or, when a recipient has met relevant statutory and regulatory criteria, all of parts of a loan may be forgiven by FEMA.