Contact Us
Make My Homepage

NJ Small Biz Owners Begging For Sandy Grants [POLL/AUDIO]

President Barack Obama is requesting $60 billion from congress for super-storm Sandy recovery efforts in New Jersey and New York.

Boardwalk in Seaside Park
Boardwalk in Seaside Park (Governor’s Office/Tim Larsen)

If approved, $2 billion of that could be used for small business grants. Business community leaders testifying before an Assembly panel say that $2 billion is not going to cut it.

A lot of small business owners took out loans to make it through the recession and if they’re forced to take out another loan to recover from Sandy they could be crushed under the weight of the added and expected new debt.

Assembly Commerce Committee chairman, Albert Coutinho says he knows a small business owner in that very situation.

Coutinho says the owner told him, “I lost $1.2 million as a result of the storm so now I’m going to go borrow money so I can work for the next six years to pay back what I lost?” The business owner is now talking with a bankruptcy attorney.

Without grants says Coutinho, “You’re basically telling that business to take the hit and 85% of the jobs in this state are created by small businesses….If they go out of business now, all of a sudden that’s going to hurt the state’s economy as well.”

“Helping businesses rebuild after Sandy will take a multi-faceted approach,” says New Jersey Business and Industry Association vice president David Brogan. “It will take a combination of grants, low-interest loans, tax incentives and regulatory flexibility, but the stakes are high. Every business that decides not to rebuild will cost us in jobs and lost tax revenues, and hurt our economy.”

While the Assembly panel was holding its hearing at the State House in Trenton, U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) was testifying on the same topic in Washington.

Menendez says, “Many small businesses simply don’t have the capacity to add more debt to their books. Small business owners around the state have told me they already took out significant debt to either start up their business, survive the Great Recession, or even make repairs after Hurricane Irene struck in the summer of 2011.”

Citing the unique challenges small businesses face when rebuilding, Menendez is calling for direct assistance to help assist small businesses which currently only have loans to turn to.


Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Best of NJ101.5

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for New Jersey Insiders quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive New Jersey Insiders contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.