News / USA

Government, Private Groups Active in Stricken New Jersey Cities

Government, Private Groups Active in Stricken New Jersey Citiesi
|| 0:00:00
X
Greg Flakus
November 08, 2012 2:25 AM
One of the New Jersey communities most affected by superstorm Sandy was the small city of Hoboken, just across the Hudson River from New York City, home to many people who work in the city and enjoy Hoboken's more relaxed environment. Much of the city was flooded during the storm, as were tunnels connecting Hoboken to New York by rail. Help is pouring into the area from both government and private agencies, as VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Hoboken.

Government, Private Groups Active in Stricken New Jersey Cities

TEXT SIZE - +
Greg Flakus
— One of the New Jersey communities most affected by superstorm Sandy was the small city of Hoboken, just across the Hudson River from New York City, home to many people who work in the city and enjoy Hoboken's more relaxed environment.  Much of the city was flooded during the storm, as were tunnels connecting Hoboken to New York by rail. Help is pouring into the area from both government and private agencies.

The racket of gasoline-powered generators and the smell of water-soaked trash piled on sidewalks now define life in Hoboken.

Some stores and restaurants are open along the main avenues where electrical power has been restored, but the view of New York's skyline just across the Hudson River entices many residents who still can't get back to work there.

Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer assured a crowd in front of City Hall that the Federal Emergency Management Agency, known as FEMA, is helping the city restore services like electrical power more quickly.

"FEMA is part of the reason that we have been able to get these substations up faster than usual. FEMA has been part of a public-private partnership," Zimmer said.

FEMA workers, assisted by young volunteers from around the country, are in Hoboken to help people in need of help get through the process.

David, a local business owner, sought help in filling out claim forms. "I am very bad with computers," he said.

David has a food company that lost all its inventory when the electrical system failed. "Now I have the electrical power, but I had a lot of merchandise in the freezer that went bad," he said.

FEMA supervisor Maryanne Ludwig says this is just one part of what the federal agency is doing here.

"We are called Individual Assistance, so we help the individual; we also have public assistance crews that are out in the city," Lugwig said.

Private companies also are involved, including the local electric utility PSE and G, which set up a tent in downtown Hoboken and provided hot coffee, charging stations for cell phones and assistance with power-related issues.

But residents themselves are doing much of the work here, cleaning out flood-damaged buildings and homes.

New Jersey people have a good attitude, according to Americorps volunteer Sophia Efrenov ((eef-FRAY-noff)).

"I can really feel the 'Jersey Strong' motto here, there are a lot of really great, positive people," Efrenov said.

Even with all the government and private help coming in, the people of Hoboken face many months of recovery.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid