Network Files Request from State for Materials Used to Staff and Train Sandy Recovery Programs
In testimony at Senate Oversight Committee, HCDNNJ shares homeowner struggles, asks for more information from DCA


Today, the Senate Legislative Oversight Committee met to hear testimony on the myriad of problems associated with the Sandy housing relief programs. At the hearing, Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey President and CEO Staci Berger issued the following statement:

"There are thousands of Sandy survivors who were denied an opportunity to appeal after their application to receive Sandy recovery aid was rejected. Many applicants were given no clear direction in the application process or even an explanation for the denial. Although the Christie administration has reopened the appeal process, these New Jerseyans will be placed on a waiting list with thousands of other families. For too many people, the apology is a day late, and $150,000 short.

"The governor has already acknowledged that mistakes have been made but has not answered repeated questions about how his administration will fix these problems now that they have ended the contract of the housing program administrator, Hammerman & Gainer, Inc. (HGI).  The Network has submitted a request under the Open Public Records Act to obtain training and related materials that the state is using with its own employees, so-called 'Housing Advisors.'

"We want to know whether and how DCA has taken steps to improve the fairness and efficiency of the programs as well as the experience and expertise that Sandy survivors deserve. DCA refused to include HUD-certified housing counselors in their programs. Unlike New York City residents, New Jerseyans are not getting the quality, trained assistance they need.

"We need a recovery that works for Sandy survivors, thousands of whom have been unfairly denied, treated badly and left to fend for themselves in a bureaucratic nightmare of the state’s making. We appreciate the Senate Legislative Oversight Committee holding this hearing to help put New Jersey on a path to securing the fair and equitable recovery our residents, our communities and our future deserve."

To access the open records request letter sent to DCA, please visit Access the Network's testimony from today's hearing at

The Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey is the statewide association of more than 250 affordable housing and community development corporations, individuals and other organizations that support the creation of housing and economic opportunities for low- and moderate-income New Jerseyans. For more information on the Network, visit

For more information: Nina Arce
Housing & Community Development Network of NJ
(609) 393-3752 x12
[email protected]
Twitter: @hcdnnj