STAFFORD TOWNSHIP — Mayor John Spodofora said the town received a check for $250,000 from the Alec Baldwin Foundation Friday to put toward rebuilding the Millcreek Community Center that was destroyed during superstorm Sandy.
Baldwin previously posted on Twitter that he was directed to the Mill Creek Community Center in Stafford Township by Gov. Chris Christie's office.
Spodofora said the building on Mill Creek Road was flooded with four feet of water during the storm.The water undermined the building and liquified the sand below, causing the cement floor to collapse, he said. The building has to be demolished and could cost as much as $1.6 million to rebuild, he added. The building must be raised and rebuilt on piling, he said.
He said he spoke with Christopher Stark from Gov. Chris Christie's office last month and was told that there was an anonymous donor who was interested in donating money to help a community in New Jersey in the aftermath of the storm.
"Chris Stark asked me what kind of damage we had and I told him about the community center and he was very interested," Spodofora said.
The mayor and Christie's office continued the dialogue over the last few weeks and when Spodofora found out that Stafford Township would be receiving a donation from Baldwin's foundation he was very surprised. Spodofora said the township also received donations from the Martin Truex Jr. Foundation in the weeks after the storm.
"I know that Alec Baldwin is an environmentalist and I am also an environmentalist so I could understand that. But he's also a very staunch Democrat," Spodofora, who is a Republican, said and laughed.
The donation from Baldwin will not only help with funding the rebuilding of the center, but also with lifting up the morale of the town.
"It's a tough time for the township and the region. This center is used by a lot of people in the community whether it's clubs or local homeowners associations," Spodofora said.
"We do have some insurance to cover rebuilding, but with the way things are we're going to have be looking anywhere we can to find money," he said.
He said he is working with Christie's office to organize a visit to the township with Baldwin where he hopes to present him with an honorary key to town.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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