THE FUTURE IS NOW FOR SANDY FUNDS
The Five Stages of Sandy Grief reach the 'Anger' phase Thursday night in Toms River as residents and non-profit groups voice their concerns as they fear the unknown future of funding as the anniversary of the super storm reaches three years on the 29th.
Congressman Tom MacArthur opened the floor to a panel of non-profit groups and residents to find answers to where they can find funding as the year closes. MacArthur said people should not have to reopen claims to get sales tax as he plans to visit FEMA in the coming days to demand they just issue the checks to the victims.
"That money is owed to those people" said MacArthur. "Those people had to pay the tax, and deserve to get it back."
As tensions continue to run high three years post Sandy for residents who fear the future of their livelihood, MacArthur says he has your back if you reach out.
"People need to speak up," said MacArthur. "That's how people like me can know what we need to focus on."
Other panelists included George Kasimos, the founder of Stop FEMA Now who spoke of ways to be better prepared for future storms by building up the dunes. With the patience of Sandy homeowners wearing thin Kasimos told elected officials in no uncertain terms what their job is to get the coast storm ready with dunes.
"We have to put political pressure on those easement holdouts," said Kasimos.
Russ and Joanna Obertz, who fell victim to Sandy continue their fight to the light by urging others to speak up and believe. "Do not lose hope at all," said Russ Obertz. "Everybody is exhausted at this point," added Joanna. "it's a daily fight."
Other members of the panels included Toms River Mayor Thomas Kelaher, Berkeley Township Mayor Carmen Amato, as well as Assemblyman Greg McGuckin (R) and Elaine of New Jersey Legal Services in addition to many others.