New York, NY -- County emergency management coordinators will learn how to apply for federal reimbursement for exceptional costs created by the September 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management have scheduled briefings in Morris, Middlesex, and Burlington counties on October 1 and 2, said Peter Martinasco, federal coordinating officer for the State of New Jersey.
"At the request of Acting Governor Donald DiFranceso, President Bush authorized an emergency declaration for the State of New Jersey on September 19, " said Martinasco. "The declaration provides Public Assistance funds to all 21 counties in the State, plus State agencies and certain private-not-for-profit organizations, for costs incurred while providing emergency protective measures. This means the federal government will pay 100 percent of all overtime, nonscheduled hours incurred by first-response emergency workers and related equipment expenses."
The Public Assistance briefings are scheduled as follows:
October 1 at 9:30 a.m. - Morris County Fire Academy, 500 West Hanover Ave. (County Road 650), Parisppany, NJ.
October 2 at 9:30 a.m. - Middlesex County Fire Academy in Sayreville, NJ.
October 2 at 2 p.m. - Burlington County Public Safety Center, 1 Academy Drive, Westhampton, NJ.
"A briefing for State agencies will be scheduled at the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management in West Trenton next week," said Martinasco.
Counties will serve as "applicants," and they will consolidate the documentation from those municipalities that provided support. These meetings focus on procedures for recovering eligible expenditures. Establishment of emergency operations centers, deployment of police, firefighters and emergency medical technicians, along with the provision of vehicles, equipment and supplies will be discussed, according to Lt. Ed O'Neil, state coordinating officer- State Office of Emergency Management.
"FEMA and State Public Assistance personnel are available to facilitate the local documentation process," O'Neil said. "Immediately following the terrorist attacks, the cost documentation had already begun."
Besides FEMA Public Assistance, federal aid includes U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) "Economic Injury Disaster Loans" to eligible small businesses in 12 counties that are unable to pay bills or meet operating expenses due to the attacks. The eligible counties are Bergen, Burlington, Essex, Hudson, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Sussex, and Union. Interest rates are usually 4 percent, with up to 30-year repayment terms, based on the applicant's ability to repay.
"The State is in the process of collecting information to include the remaining nine counties in New Jersey," said O'Neil.
New Jersey business owners with facilities in Manhattan, NYC, may also be eligible for SBA physical disaster loans to repair or replace disaster damaged properties, including real estate, equipment, inventory and supplies.
Business owners can call SBA's toll-free registration number 1-800-659-2955, or FRS 1-800-877-8339 for the speech or hearing impaired, to begin the loan application process.