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Sandy aid tilted toward neediest NJ homeowners

WOODLAND PARK, N.J. (AP) — Federal rules require that at least half of the Superstorm Sandy aid coming to New Jersey goes to residents at or below moderate income levels.

An analysis by The Record newspaper finds that so far, the Christie administration has tilted the scales even more in favor of lower-income residents.

About $642 million in grants have been approved to date through two homeowner programs. One provides up to $150,000 to rebuild and elevate heavily damaged houses. The other provides $10,000 checks to homeowners who agree not to move from their home counties for at least three years.

The Record ( says 69 percent of the rebuilding money has gone to low- to moderate-income homeowners.

More affluent homeowners have received 59 percent of the $10,000 grants. But overall, 64 cents of every dollar in grant money has gone to low- to moderate-income households.