East Brunswick council approves using storm emergency funds for COVID-19 relief

EAST BRUNSWICK–The Township Council approved a resolution authorizing the use of Storm Recovery Reserves in response to the novel coronavirus crisis.

Municipalities and counties with Storm Recovery Reserves may use those funds for COVID-19 response, according to the council.

“This is the ability to take monies that we put in the storm reserve fund. Generally, townships have reserves for storms, be it a hurricane, snowstorm or whatever,” Business Administrator Joseph Criscuolo said. “So we have a reserve fund set up and it is dedicated for that and in this state of emergency, we are allowed by resolution to move that money over to make those funds available in the state of emergency.”

State law allows a municipality or county to adopt a resolution authorizing Storm Recovery Reserve funds to be used for “any purpose necessary to protect the safety, security, health and welfare of its citizens from the damage caused by an emergency declared by the governor or president of the United States,” according to the council.

“Most likely, most of this stuff that we’re purchasing here will be reimbursable either through federal … grants or through the [Federal Emergency Management Agency] at a certain percentage rate,” Criscuolo said. “Some of that just allows you to have the funds available that was set aside for storm emergency.”

Any reimbursement of these expenditures will be deposited back into the reserve, according to the council.

The council approved the resolution during the April 27 council meeting.

For more information, visit www.eastbrunswick.org/129/Agendas-Minutes.

Contact Vashti Harris at vharris@newspapermediagroup.com.