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Post-Sandy, Garden Staters Rate Themselves and Others

The latest survey from Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind asked New Jerseyans how they thought government officials handled Superstorm Sandy, how well utility companies performed and how, themselves, were prepared for the storm.

In the latest survey from FDU PublicMind, most New Jerseyans said the utility companies did the best they could to restore power. (Bruce Bennett, Getty Images)

More than three-quarters of New Jersey registered voters gave high marks to state government for its response to the storm. Eight-in-ten agreed with the statement, “Government officials acted swiftly and decisively to help residents who were affected.” Just five percent believed, “Government officials were more of an obstacle than a help to residents who were affected.”

Respondents also gave themselves good marks. Three-quarters rated their own readiness as “excellent” or “good.” Nearly the same amount said extreme weather events are either “somewhat likely” or “very likely” to happen more often in New Jersey.

“Having been hit by three debilitating storms in a little more than a year, residents may find these events akin to a new normal in weather patterns,” said Krista Jenkins, director of PublicMind and professor of political science at FDU.

Despite more than 60 percent of respondents indicating they lost power for five or more days because of Sandy, a majority showed compassion for the utility companies. Nearly 70 percent said their power company did the best they could. Jenkins said these numbers should be welcome news to the power companies.

The PublicMind survey was conducted by telephone from October 26 to October 29 and November 13 to November 18, using a randomly-selected sample of registered voters statewide.

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