NJ storm victims wait for relief fund money - New York News

Superstorm Sandy

NJ storm victims wait for relief fund money

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NEW JERSEY (MYFOXNY.COM) -

Four months after Hurricane Sandy, people in Union Beach, N.J., are still cleaning up. But not that many people are rebuilding because the homeowners need money.

Anthony Cavallo calls a trailer his home because his actual home sustained so much damage during Hurricane Sandy that it has to be torn down. The problem is that he has no money to rebuild.

"In the beginning it was shock and sadness and now pissed off?" Cavallo said. "You know… let me move on with my life, let me get my insurance money that I've been paying for, let me get government help or grants coming."

The Hurricane Sandy NJ Relief Fund, which is run by New Jersey First Lady Mary Pat Christie, has raised $32 million. But victims haven't seen a dime of it yet. That makes everyone we spoke with in this battered Union Beach community angry.

"I'm appalled, I'm hurt, I'm appalled and I don't know where to go," said Diane Dietrich. She is better off than Cavallo, but the retired teacher still has tens of thousands of dollars' worth of damage to her dream home. Her life savings is dwindling.

"I don't know where to turn at this point," she said.

The executive director of the relief fund released a statement.

"It's our duty to responsibly and effectively distribute the dollars we have raised," Cam Henderson said in the statement. "We are proud of the grant process we put in place that we believe will have a significant positive impact on storm victims throughout the Garden State."

"Believe it when I see it," said Troy Rudolph, a Sandy victim. "No signs of it and haven't heard anything of it."

The relief fund plans to give out $1 million to six hard-hit counties this week and another $5 million will go to nonprofits soon after.

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