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Somers Point Receives Second Grant For Post-Sandy Recovery Planning

The grant announced Friday is for $330,000 to revise the city's Master Plan, among other items.

Patch File Photo
Patch File Photo
After receiving one planning grant from the state in the wake of Superstorm Sandy, Somers Point was awarded a second grant this week.

Somers Point received a $330,000 Post-Sandy Planning Assistance Grant, New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Richard E. Constable, III announced Friday afternoon.

The grant is intended to help the city implement long-range plans designed to enable it to become resilient in the event of future significant weather events.

Somers Point received a $30,000 grant in October of 2013. The city used that grant to complete a Strategic Recovery Planning Report.

The report includes recommendations both for rebuilding the community and increasing the resilience of infrastructure and buildings, and outlines multi-year investments to increase economic development.

Somers Point lost about $1.7 million in ratables between Oct. 29, 2012, when the storm hit New Jersey, and March 1, 2013, according to The Press of Atlantic City.

“We applaud Somers Point 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. “In fact, Somers Points is among the first local governments to be awarded Phase 2 planning grants, which allow communities to drill down in their planning and address very specific challenges they are facing.”

The City can use the grant announced on Friday to conduct a re-examination of its Master Plan, revise its zoning ordinances, create design standards for the redevelopment of its historic district and Bay Avenue waterfront district, make infrastructure improvements for its Route 9 West neighborhood, and fund a design and marketing study for its Route 9 West business district.

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.

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