Governor Dannel P. Malloy today announced that the state has released two action plans describing how a total of $82.5 million in federal relief funds will be expended to address the critical needs of Connecticut residents affected by Storm Sandy.
“Getting life back to normal for residents has been a top priority for my administration, and obtaining this federal funding for our state is an important step in the recovery process,” Governor Malloy said. “The plans we are releasing today describe how the state will directly administer this funding to get it quickly and efficiently to those most impacted by the storm so they can rebuild and get back on their feet.”
One plan, which is available for review at www.decd.org, details how $72 million in funding administered through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) program will be utilized. Funds will be used to repair, reconstruct, and enhance the resiliency of single-family and multifamily housing, infrastructure and public facilities, as well as small business assistance, planning activities and administrative costs.
Funds will be disbursed to assist individuals, families, small businesses and others.
Connecticut’s action plan, drafted by the state Department of Housing (DOH), incorporates the strategy for allocating funds as set forth in the allocation plan approved by the General Assembly earlier this month. The plan details the parameters by which money will be spent and the guidelines for the application process that will follow once funds are approved by HUD. It is currently being made available for public comment, which must be e-mailed to DOH at CT.Housing.Plans@ct.gov by midnight on June 4.
“Our plan was developed in tandem with our local partners, making sure that federal aid is put to the best possible uses and that it gets out quickly to the people, businesses, and communities that need it most,” state Housing Commissioner Evonne Klein said. “Opening the document up for public comment, however, ensures that everyone has the opportunity to review the plan and have their voices heard if they wish.”
On June 5, Commissioner Klein will lead a delegation of mayors and first selectmen from many of the impacted shoreline towns and cities to further discuss their municipalities’ needs under the CDBG-DR program with representatives from HUD.
The second plan, which is available for review at www.ct.gov/dss/sandyssbg, details how $10.5 million in funding administered through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Social Services Block Grant (SSBG) Supplemental Funds will be utilized. Funds under this grant are intended to address unmet protective, case management, housing, and related service needs.
This plan, drafted by the state Department of Social Services (DSS), is being made available for public comment and will soon be the topic of an informational hearing of the General Assembly’s Appropriations and Human Services Committees.
“The extension of Social Services Block Grant funding to help Connecticut and other states recover after Storm Sandy is greatly appreciated and especially important in areas that may not be as readily apparent on the surface as other recovery efforts,” DSS Commissioner Roderick L. Bremby said. “Like SSBG funding, the supplemental dollars will support a variety of human service programs for families and individuals, but in this case, only those who were directly affected by the storm.”
In the case of housing services, the plan calls for assisting individuals or families in locating, obtaining or retaining suitable housing. Services may include tenant counseling, and helping residents identify and correct substandard housing conditions, understand leases, secure utilities, make moving arrangements, and make minor renovations.
Protective services for adults are designed to prevent or remedy abuse, neglect or exploitation of adults who are unable to protect their own interests. Protective services for children are designed to prevent or remedy abuse, neglect, or exploitation of children who may be harmed through physical or mental injury, sexual abuse or exploitation, and negligent treatment or maltreatment, including failure to be provided with adequate food, clothing, shelter or medical care.
To date, more than $373 million in federal assistance has been approved to help Connecticut with expenses following the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy.