Downe Twp. residents still seeking federal Sandy aid - NBC40.net

Downe Twp. residents still seeking federal Sandy aid

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Lin and Paul Waterman managed to open their store after it was torn apart by Hurricane Sandy, but waterways clogged by silt and debris from the Superstorm have left them and other bayshore boat rental businesses high and dry.

"If we can't get our creek to the point where I can safely operate, I can't operate. How can I operate?" said Lin Waterman.

"People look at me, 'Why am I on a sandbar?' Because we can't get the help we need," said charter boat Captain Mike Rothman.

But they're hoping that may soon change, after the non-profit organization "U.S. Strong" gathered Downe Township resident to raise support for a proposed federal fund that would aid communities affected by extreme weather.

"We want to make sure that there's a federal dedicated fund in place - a fund that you can't play politics with, A fund that's there for communities to prepare in advance of extreme weather and respond to extreme weather after it happens," said U.S. Strong's New Jersey director Lauren Townsend.

The Delaware Bayshore is full of open space and preserved Wetlands, and that's exactly why residents are afraid they aren't receiving any federal Sandy aid.

"What, are we forgotten? Why, because we're Cumberland County and we're the Delaware Bay and it's bayshore and we don't have all the people that are around us?" asked Rothman. "We're just as much New Jersey as anybody is."

"We're not looking for Coney Island - we don't live like that here. But we sure could use a shot in the arm to bring these people's lives back in order," said Joe Matter, of the South Jersey Quail Project.

As U.S. Strong works to gain traction, Downe Township resident will have to wait and see if their distress is enough for lawmakers to take notice.S U-S STRONG WORKS TO GAIN TRACTION ...

"If they have a regular paycheck, if they have health insurance, if their house has running water, then I don't think they understand what the definition of enough is," said Waterman.

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