WASHINGTON, DC - The U.S. Senate approved Hurricane Sandy relief totaling $50 billion today. The release of the funds will further ignite the rebuilding and remodeling boom in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut that is running at five times the pace of other regions.
The House of Representatives approved the storm relief funds two weeks ago; the Senate acted today.
The disbursement of funds - much of it aimed at rebuilding infrastructure, retaining walls, protective dunes and restoring maritime shipping facilities knocked out by the store - will leave more than $3 billion for residential reconstruction.
Of the $50 billion, a ‘Community Development Fund’ of $3.85 billion is "to remain available until September 30, 2017, for necessary expenses related to disaster relief, long-term recovery, restoration of infrastructure and housing and economic revitalization in the most impacted and distressed areas resulting from a major disaster declared pursuant to the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq.) due to Hurricane Sandy,” according to the language of the 32-page House bill. Now that it is passed by the Senate, the money should arrive in the area about the time Woodworking Network opens Cabinets & Closets Expo 2013 in Edison, NJ.
The Remodeling Marketing Index issued by the National Assn. of Home Builders last week was above 50 in all four regions of the country. The RMI in the Northeast surged 24 points, mostly as a result of Hurricane Sandy reconstruction.