Longport has been awarded nearly $1.9 million in reimbursement by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for infrastructure repairs related to Hurricane Sandy.
The grant funding announced Thursday will help the borough finance projects along it’s south end, which was hard hit by the October storm.
“We’re very, very excited about this,” said Mayor Nicholas Russo, who’s been working with Longport’s congressional delegation to secure funding. “This is an example of how you can get elected officials and governmental professions working together and have an outcome beneficial to all the people.”
Russo said the FEMA grant will help Longport repay the $4.5 million emergency bond it took out for a number of Sandy-related projects.
Those projects include the 11th Avenue interior jetty, which started construction earlier this month; the 11th Avenue terminal groin, where cars turn around at the city’s south end; and the Atlantic Avenue point jetty.
Borough Engineer Dick Carter said the grant will not just replace the existing infrastructure, but improve protections against future storms.
“It failed for a reason,” he said of the jetties. “This allows us to improve it and put it back better.”
The 11th Avenue interior jetty, also known as a “revetment,” began construction earlier this month at a cost of about $500,000. It will consist of a rock sea wall to protect properties around the inlet. Carter said the project is near the halfway point.
“It’s on target,” he said. “The rocks look good and they’re bigger than what we had before.”
Carter said the Atlantic Avenue jetty, meanwhile, is a key component that will augment the protection of a beach replenishment and dune project Longport is trying to coordinate with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
No date has been set for the beach fill, he said, but Longport has made it through the first round of funding. Borough officials will meet with the Army Corps next week to work out the specifics of the project.
Russo said he’s thankful for the help of the congressional delegation and federal officials in securing funding for Longport’s projects.
Additional funding for projects in Union County was also announced Thursday.
“Every bit of Sandy relief moves New Jersey forward in our recovery from the storm,” said U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, D-NJ, in a statement. “I am very glad to see this Sandy relief coming to Union County and the Borough of Longport, and I will continue to fight for the federal resources.”