WASHINGTON, DC - According to New Jersey’s congressional representatives, urban areas of some parts of the state face an injustice when it comes to certain funding. In particular, urban areas in southern New Jersey have been prevented from receiving funding from the Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI.)
In a letter to the acting administrator of FEMA, the entire New Jersey congressional delegation shared its concerns and its request for change. The UASI program falls under FEMA’s authority and is intended to provide financial assistance to “high-threat, high-density urban areas in efforts to build and sustain the capabilities necessary to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from acts of terrorism.”
As it now stands, government authorities from Pennsylvania currently decide if South Jersey should be eligible to receive any portion of UASI funding for the Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington Metropolitan Statistical Area. This has resulted in UASI funding for that area directed solely to projects in Pennsylvania.
The bipartisan delegation pointed out the number of increased threats to New Jersey. In 2018 alone, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), New Jersey, saw a increase in the number of hate crimes. Notably, the FBI reported 561 incidents.
“New Jersey taxpayers get less back in federal assistance for the taxpayer dollars they pay in than any other state in the country; this is just another example of New Jerseyans not getting what we need, and it’s time that changes,” said Congressman Andy Kim, who represents New Jersey’s third congressional district.
“This funding is critical for the safety of our communities,” Kim continued. “Whether its funds to help our places of worship improve their security in the face of rising Anti-Semitic violence, or resources to protect our infrastructure and industry, I’m proud to be joined by my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to stand up for New Jersey.”