Eight weeks in and there was still a need to provide a hot meals to approximately 150 of the 250 or so folks who showed up for clothes and dry goods in Keansburg.
How do we as a state, a nation look at ourselves in the mirror when children and seniors are still going to bed cold and hungry, some still in damp moldy homes.How do we look forward to the celebrations of the season as landlords sit doing nothing as their tenants suffer through misery, hoping for the opportunity for vacancy decontrol so they can double the rent of the next occupant?
How do we sit silent as FEMA imposes new regulations that will force working poor from their homes so the big builders can come in and replace the last areas of "affordable housing" with million dollar homes.
We shouldn't, we don't have to. I have proposed 3 simple measures to assist Sandy victims retain their homes and protect their equity. I presented them to the Senate Committee on Hurricane Sandy, I have met with representatives, I have found one who will move forward with at least one, a bill that would require a fair purchase price by a developer before any approval to merge properties for any large scale project. He is also exploring a second bill to allow deed restricted mobile homes to be placed on the property where the homes of low income and Seniors were destroyed.
A third measure would require the help of our congressional and US senate members to block FEMA from forcing our neighbors from their homes with onerous new rules, rather waiving these new rules for current owners and deed restricting the properties so a new owner would have to bring them into compliance.
We are talking about people's homes, the ability for these folks to have the most basic of human needs, to provide shelter to their family. Any rule that strips this most basic need from our neighbors is unjust and wrong. Before you settle into your holiday routine I would urge you, in the spirit of the season, to take a few moments and call your state and federal representatives and urge them to support saving the homes of sandy victims.