Superstorm Sandy

Bureaucracy Blocks Sandy Victims From Promised Federal Aid

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ASBURY PARK, N.J.—A mass of red tape befell the Van Houtens of Union Beach, N.J., after they received preliminary approval for a New Jersey-administered resettlement grant in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

Jeannette Van Houten had urged people in her neighborhood to apply for federal aid. …

The Van Houtens were rejected for the grant to help them rebuild, even though they had followed the rules and registered with FEMA. A form letter said: "You do not meet the eligibility requirements for assistance through this program because there is no confirmation for FEMA registration for assistance," the state Department of Community Affairs wrote.