Business Impact Review Conducted in Partnership with Industry will Assist Small Business Recovery
Trenton, NJ – During a visit to Sea Bright this afternoon, Governor Chris Christie today announced the implementation of a business impact assessment for small businesses affected by Hurricane Sandy. The survey, created in partnership with statewide business groups, the New Jersey Business and Industry Association (NJBIA), the State Chamber of Commerce, Commerce and Industry Association of NJ (CIANJ) and National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) will help inform the Administration and industry leaders about the most pressing needs of those small businesses affected by Hurricane Sandy. The results will not only allow for direct follow up with respondents about their issues, but help formulate broader strategy when it comes to business recovery around the state, including the specific resources required by business owners and what they identify as areas of concern for the near and long term. Sea Bright was one of the hardest hit communities along the Jersey Shore.
“Rebuilding our state after the devastation of Hurricane Sandy is the most important and pressing challenge before us,” said Governor Christie. “Helping small businesses means helping the backbone of our economy statewide – and particularly in the hardest-hit shore communities where our small businesses are a foundation of our way of life. This business impact survey will help us better understand what resources these businesses need to get back to normal operations, whether it’s low interest loans, streamlining the permitting process, or identifying emerging issues and concerns. I want to thank New Jersey’s business leaders for partnering with us in support of their members and the broader business community during this vital recovery and rebuilding phase.”
The survey kicks-off this weekend with an on-the ground effort of local chambers and volunteers. Key components of the survey cover loss information including cause, category and estimated value of the loss; whether the firm has already applied for disaster assistance; and the overall impact of the storm on the business’ operation. Business owners can directly go-online to fill out the survey at http://www.nj.gov/njbusiness/.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the Christie Administration has worked expeditiously to get programs and direct assistance to small businesses. In fact, over $54 million in Small Business Association disaster loans have been approved and over 8,300 impacted residents and businesses are registered for this type of assistance. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Labor has approved a $15.6 million National Emergency Grant to fund the administration’s plan to hire unemployed New Jersey residents to assist with Hurricane Sandy clean-up and recovery efforts.
At the state level, Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno has mobilized the Business Action Center to be a one-stop shop for all business-related disaster assistance. This includes financial support, information on temporary space, and technical assistance for businesses impacted by the Storm and still in need of assistance.
Earlier this week, the Department of Labor and Workforce Development launched a trio of innovative grant programs totaling $26 million, designed to help keep jobs in New Jersey and employ people in the recovery effort. The three initiatives, Recovery4Jersey, Skills4Jersey and Opportunity4Jersey, will put Labor Department training dollars directly into New Jersey businesses with the goal of connecting the unemployed to employment opportunities in the Sandy recovery effort.
To learn more about the grant opportunities made available through the economic recovery initiatives, please go to: http://lwd.dol.state.nj.us/labor/employer/training/FY13_NGO_Skills.html.
Small businesses in need access to low-interest disaster loans, visit the SBA website at http://www.sba.gov/category/navigation-structure/loans-grants/small-business-loans/disaster-loans
To contact New Jersey’s Business Action Center (BAC) dial 1-866-534-7789.
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