Reporting Tim Williams
BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Superstorm Sandy may be gone but lawmakers are still battling to help Maryland recover. The state has been denied federal relief money for the hardest hit areas.
As Tim Williams reports, a new plan of action may prompt a second look.
It was more than a month ago when Superstorm Sandy roared across Maryland and the rest of the East Coast. The storm pounded parts of the Eastern Shore with flooding, wind and rain while devastating western Maryland with several feet of snow.
“Maryland woke up in the Lower Shore to this headline: `U.S. Denies Aid To Maryland Storm Victims,’” said Senator Barbara Mikulski.
But it was just this week hearings on the storm’s aftermath revealed anticipated federal relief funds were not coming Maryland’s way.
“The people of Crisfield were severely impacted with the loss of their homes, with their businesses,” said Senator Ben Cardin. “The agricultural crops were ruined and this is a very vulnerable community.”
The Federal Emergency Management Agency is covering cost to public areas but declined Maryland’s request for individual residents. The director said, “At this point, information doesn’t support a major presidential disaster declaration. It is not based upon the trauma to the individual. You know, our hearts go out to them.”
“Somehow they just made a bad decision but I’m hoping that they’ll change their minds,” said Howard County Executive Ken Ulman.
Ulman is among the state lawmakers providing assistance and resources to impacted areas. He hopes the effort will bolster Maryland’s case for federal funds.
Maryland has 30 days to appeal FEMA’s decision.
Residents with damages are urged to report it to the Maryland Department of Human Resources. The relief hotline for Sandy is 888-756-7836.