New Jersey $28 billion short on Hurricane Sandy recovery

Ross Tucker
Yahoo News

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New Jersey has spent the year since Hurricane Sandy trying to recover, but a new study from Rutgers University indicates the state has a long way to go to get back to pre-Sandy status.

The Rutgers School of Public Affairs and Administration found that the state has "an unmet need of $4.85 billion in direct damage costs and an additional $23.5 billion needed for hazard mitigation," according to a report from The Star-Ledger.

The study found that more than 107,000 people in the state lost their jobs as a result of the storm damage. The cost of removing the debris has come in at $171 million.

The study's author also noted the dire situation facing New Jersey's infrastructure and the massive amounts needed to improve it. The report points out that "66% of roads are graded poor or mediocre quality, 26% of bridges are functionally obsolete, and 10% of New Jersey bridges are identified as structurally deficient."

Low-income residents have fared worst, having accounted for half of all residential damage but getting under 30% of the overall assistance.

Data points such as these could come back to haunt Gov. Chris Christie, who put himself front and center in the summer's "Stronger Than the Storm" ad blitz. The $25 million campaign was funded with federal disaster money and was aimed at salvaging the key summer season on the shore. Those ads stopped appearing in August.

Click image for RELATED SLIDESHOW: 'Stars of Hope'. (Photo by Carlo Allegri/Reuters)
Click image for RELATED SLIDESHOW: 'Stars of Hope'. (Photo by Carlo Allegri/Reuters)