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a. The Legislature finds and declares that there may be circumstances when it is desirable for municipalities to supplement federal and State disaster relief programs for its residents whose real property was damaged by flood, hurricane or other natural disaster. It is therefore in the public interest to permit municipalities to provide limited grants to certain persons who require relief in addition to insurance or from federal or State loan programs in order to assure that those people are able to remain in the community and rebuild in order to rapidly return their real property to the tax rolls at its full and fair value prior to the disaster.
b. Following a flood, hurricane or other natural disaster for which the Governor has declared a state of emergency, a municipality in the affected area may establish, by resolution, a Municipal Natural Disaster Relief Grant Program pursuant to rules and regulations adopted by the Department of Community Affairs. Under such program the municipality may give grants of up to $5,000 to persons owning real property in the municipality who are without insurance that adequately covers the real property damage inflicted by the natural disaster and for whom the repayment of a low-interest loan under any federal or State program would constitute an extreme hardship based on their income and such other financial circumstances as are deemed relevant pursuant to rules and regulations promulgated by the Department of Community Affairs. Grant money received pursuant to a municipal program under this section shall be used solely for the repair and reconstruction of the owner's damaged real property situated within the municipality.
c. A municipality may not implement a Municipal Natural Disaster Relief Grant Program without submitting its resolution and a plan to implement the program to the Department of Community Affairs. A municipality shall not implement its plan, and shall not distribute grants pursuant to that plan without receiving written approval from the Department of Community Affairs. The Department of Community Affairs shall develop criteria for approval of a municipality's plan. Any criteria developed by the department shall include, but not be limited to, provisions which (1) limit the financial burden of the program on taxpayers of the municipality and State; and (2) ensure that the program does not result in the duplication of benefits of applicable State or Federal programs.
d. Monies granted by a municipality pursuant to a Municipal Disaster Relief Grant Program may not be used for any damage or loss which is met by any other source.
e. The Department of Community Affairs shall adopt and promulgate rules and regulations within 120 days of enactment of P.L.1999, c. 366 (C.40:48-9.15 et al.) pursuant to the “Administrative Procedure Act,” P.L.1968, c. 410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), to effectuate the purposes of this section. Such rules shall include, but not be limited to, criteria for approval of a municipality's plan, eligibility requirements for determining financial hardship, and procedures for approval and administration of grants.
Cite this article: FindLaw.com - New Jersey Statutes Title 40. Municipalities and Counties 40 § 48-9.15 - last updated February 19, 2021 | https://codes.findlaw.com/nj/title-40-municipalities-and-counties/nj-st-sect-40-48-9-15/
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