Fed dollars to purchase flood-prone Passaic River homes?

Congressman Bill Pascrell (D-NJ-08) announced recently that the U.S. House of Representatives approved an Energy and Water Appropriations bill which includes $5 million to buy up private homes in extremely flood-prone neighborhoods of Wayne and Pompton Lakes. The homes, about 30 in all, sit in the Passaic River watershed.

For the last few years, the Army Corps of Engineers has been buying up and removing floodplain houses as part of the Passaic River Basin Flood Management program. That program will get a big shot in the arm if Rep. Pascrell’s bill can make it through the U.S. Senate. “I am thrilled by the support of my congressional colleagues who voted in favor of funding the full $5 million earmark to provide an additional option these troubled homeowners,” said Rep. Pascrell, a longtime friend of the Passaic, who sits on the House Ways and Means Committee. “I’m especially looking forward to the restoration of the overdeveloped floodplain that will make the river safer for everyone.” Here’s hoping.