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Montclair Township

Essex County Announces 105 Temporary Jobs for Hurricane Recovery

Grant to subsidize temporary employment for Hurricane Sandy cleanup, repair and relief work

Essex County, NJ – Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. announced that grant money from the Essex County Department of Economic Development, Training and Employment has been awarded to municipalities and government agencies to create temporary jobs to assist with cleanup from Hurricane Sandy or to help with humanitarian assistance for victims. Grants have been awarded to Belleville, Bloomfield, Caldwell, Fairfield, Irvington, Livingston, Nutley, East Orange, Orange the East Orange Water Commission and Essex County Government. The Essex County DEDTE received a $420,957 grant from the Federal Hurricane Sandy Disaster National Emergency Grant that was allocated through the NJ Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

The grant can be utilized to provide temporary employment for individuals working on projects for the cleanup, demolition, repair, renovation and reconstruction of damaged public structures, facilities and lands. Temporary jobs may also be created for those working on projects that provide food, clothing, shelter and other humanitarian assistance for disaster victims. Because of ongoing needs associated with the hurricane, the following 11 municipalities and government agencies, and the number of jobs being created, are: Belleville (6), Bloomfield (10), Caldwell (2), Fairfield (4), Irvington (7), Livingston (3), Nutley (3), East Orange (15), East Orange Water Commission (20), Orange (6) and the County of Essex (29). A total of 105 temporary jobs have been created with this funding. Individuals hired through the grant will start their jobs in early December.

The City of Newark will be administering their own grant funding to create temporary jobs to assist with the clean up from Hurricane Sandy.

Individuals eligible to participate in the National Emergency Grant Disaster projects must meet one of the following criteria:

• Workers who have been temporarily or permanently dislocated as a result of the natural disaster.

• Eligible dislocated workers as defined in WIA Section 101(9) who are unemployed and are not receiving unemployment compensation (UI) or other types of income support, including WorkFirst New Jersey.

• Eligible individuals are “long-termed unemployed as defined by the State,” meaning they have been unemployed for 13 of the last 26 weeks (the weeks do not have to be consecutive) and are not otherwise eligible in the first two categories.

Individuals receiving assistance cannot be employed for more than six (6) months or 1,040 hours. Participants must be paid the higher of Federal, State or local minimum wage or the comparable rates of pay for individuals employed in similar occupations. The maximum amount that can be earned by a participant is $12,000, excluding the cost of fringe benefits.

“Hurricane Sandy was one of the most devastating natural disasters to hit Essex County in our lifetime. The destruction can be seen throughout our neighborhoods, in our parks and through our business community and cannot be easily reversed,” DiVincenzo said. “This emergency grant funding will create much-needed temporary jobs to help with cleanup efforts and relief work. We are pleased that during these difficult economic times we have the ability to utilize these grant funds to employ people and have them engaged on projects that will help stabilize our neighborhoods,” he pointed out.

“Before Hurricane Sandy’s surge receded from the Jersey Shore, my staff was busy at work obtaining the $15.6 million National Emergency Grant that brings us together today. The intent of the funding is to allow government agencies to hire unemployed people to help the state, counties and towns in their clean-up efforts,” said NJ Department of Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner Harold J. Wirths. “Through the grant, we’ve already put nearly 100 people to work on the recovery effort and we have government agencies requesting to put another 1,300 workers on the streets in 16 counties. We are prepared to secure additional federal funding if needed to get the job done,” he added.