Sandy causes estimated $29.4 billion in damage

Hurricane Sandy caused an unprecedented $29.4 billion in damage to the state, Gov. Chris Christie said today.

The estimate is preliminary and includes damages to personal property, businesses, transportation and utilities infrastructure as well as to the state’s tourism industry.

The governor said the estimate will be refined and revised in the coming weeks.

“This preliminary number is based on the best available data, field observations and geographical mapping, and supported by expert advice from my Cabinet commissioners and an outside consulting company,” said Christie. “In a short period of time, we put together a comprehensive and responsible estimate, which may increase in the weeks ahead, and I stand ready to work with our Congressional delegation and the Obama Administration to get the funding support New Jersey expects and deserves in the aftermath of this catastrophe.  We will continue to provide immediate relief for our citizens who were struck hard by Sandy. But be assured, I will spare no effort and waste no time to rebuild and restore our tourism industry, our transportation and utilities infrastructure and the lives of our citizens for the long term.”

The preliminary cost estimate includes aid received to date and anticipated from federal sources including FEMA and the Small Business Administration. The estimate will likely be refined further to consider and include the long-term impact on the next tourism season, shifts in population, impact on real estate values and other factors, according to a release from the administration.

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