U.S. Senators Robert Menendez and Cory Booker have announced that the city of Bayonne will receive over $8 million in funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to prevent flooding and sewage overflow.
Bayonne will utilize this funding to purchase and install a 500-kilowatt generator and other electrical equipment to mitigate loss of power at the 63rd Street Pumping Station to prevent the overflow of raw sewage into the basements of 59 residences served by this pump station that processes sewage and stormwater.
In a joint statement, Senators Menendez and Booker praised the funding as a “critical investment in Bayonne’s infrastructure and safety.” They also noted that the project will create jobs and help to build resilience in the face of future extreme weather events.
“As a coastal state that faces many flooding instances throughout the year, including flash flooding in low-lying, urban areas and flooding due to rising sea levels in our coastal communities, federal financial support is vital to ensuring New Jersey residents and their properties are protected from harm,” said Sen. Menendez.“This nearly $9 million in funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency will reduce the impacts of flooding for residents in Bayonne
“We must ensure the safety and resilience of our communities in the face of natural disasters,” said Sen. Booker. “These investments in New Jersey’s infrastructure and flood-mitigation measures will protect public health and prevent damage to homes.”
Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis welcomed the news, stating that the funding will “allow the city to make important upgrades to our sewer system and improve our resilience against future storms and flooding.” He added that the upgrades will benefit not only Bayonne residents, but also neighboring communities that rely on the city’s infrastructure.
The FEMA funding is part of the agency’s Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, which provides grants to state and local governments for projects that reduce the risk of future natural disasters. The program is designed to promote long-term solutions to natural hazards, rather than simply providing relief after a disaster has occurred.
The Bayonne project is just one of many infrastructure projects that are currently underway or planned in New Jersey, as the state seeks to improve its resilience to climate change and extreme weather events. In addition to funding from FEMA, the state is also receiving funding from the federal government’s infrastructure bill, which was recently signed into law by President Biden.
Sen. Menendez has been the leading advocate in Congress for an overhaul of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), since Superstorm Sandy devastated New Jersey 10 years ago. The NFIP-RE Act, which Sen. Menendez plans to reintroduce soon, would extend the program for five years, while implementing a series of sweeping reforms to address the waste, abuse and mismanagement plaguing the system.
Overall, the funding for the Bayonne project is expected to have a significant impact on the city’s ability to manage flooding and sewage overflow, and to improve the quality of life for residents and businesses in the area.