News & Announcements Blog

This blog is about NJAFM News and Announcements. Posts can only be made by NJAFM Administrators, however comments to the posts can be made by all registered members. If you have an announcement that you would like posted to this blog, send the request to This blog is viewable by the public.

  • Monday, October 24, 2016 9:58 PM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)

    Coasts in Times of Sea-Level Rise?

    Public Lecture

    Robert Kopp

    Rutgers University

    October 27, 2016

    7 pm

    Cook Student Center

    New Brunswick, NJ

    Complete details here


    Rutgers Climate Institute: http://climatechange.rutgers.eduFollow us on Facebook!  

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    Rutgers Climate Institute, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey,14 College Farm Road, New Brunswick, NJ 08901

  • Wednesday, October 12, 2016 9:52 AM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)

    Tuesday November 1st 2016 8:30am-2pm

    COST: $25 (includes lunch)

    This workshop is designed for school administrators, facilities managers, municipal officials, environmental commission members or Green Teams who are exploring implementation of green technologies at their sites. The constructed wetland at Duke Farms is one of the very few natural wastewater systems in the state that use natural processes involving vegetation, soils and microbes to treat wastewater. Join Duke Farms and other well-known sustainability leaders for an intensive program that explores how our constructed wetlands serve 600,000 people annually as well as other sustainable technologies at Duke Farms.

     8:30-9:30am- Welcome and Overview of Duke Farms Sustainable Technology. Jon Wagar (Duke Farms, Deputy Executive Director)

    9:30-11am- Constructed Wetland Systems. Olin Christy (Biohabitats, Senior Engineering Technician)

    11-11:30am- An Educational Perspective on Green Technology. Mark Biedron (NJ Board of Education, President and Willow School Founder)

    11:30-12pm- Managing Compliance. Clifford Berek (Duke Farms, Volunteer Manager)

    12-1pm- Networking Lunch
    1-2pm- Walking Tour of Duke Farms Sustainable Technology (optional)


    Registration information may be found here.

    Questions? Contact: Tanya Sulikowski, Duke Farms Programs Manager 908-243-3626


  • Wednesday, September 28, 2016 2:16 PM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)

    This one-day awareness level course will provide participants with an understanding of the concept of resilience as it applies to coastal communities with a focus on resilience as a unifying framework for community-based planning, preparedness, response and recovery. The course will emphasize target capabilities to enhance preparedness and response to natural disasters, including chronic, as well as extreme events affecting coastal communities. It will demonstrate how to integrate risk-based, community-based, and collaborative strategies into plans and programs. The goal of the course is to enhance the participant’s ability to support preparedness and response efforts by developing and sustaining resilient coastal communities. For further information go to:                  Coastal Community Resilience Course.pdf

  • Thursday, August 11, 2016 8:47 PM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)

    Choose from online or face-to-face.  Receive hands-on training from Vern Bonner, PE, retired chief of training for HEC.  The online course includes seven live sessions and recorded lectures.  You can access either at anytime. Reserve your seat today!

    October 26-December 14, 2016 Online

    February 24-April 21, 2017 Online

    May 8-10, 2017 in Madison, Wisconsin

    For details or to register go to:

  • Tuesday, August 09, 2016 11:00 AM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)

    The National Disaster Preparedness Training Center (NDPTC) is a FEMA funded mobile training agency. Log -in and registration information for courses is at:  NDPTC - Login and Registration Instructions 10.8.2015.pdf

    The following are upcoming NDPTC courses titles, dates and locations:

    August 18th - HURRIPLAN Resilient Building Design for Coastal Communities (PER-306) - Brooklyn, New York  For further info see:              NDPTCflyer_8.18-19.2016_Hurriplan@Brooklyn,NY Updated 080816.pdf

    September 13th  - Social Media for Natural Disaster Response and Recovery (PER-304) - Rochester, New York.  For further info see:  NDPTCflyer_9.13.2016_SM@Rochester,NY Updated 080816.pdf

    September 15th - Social Media Tools and Techniques (PER-344) - Rochester, New York.  For further info see:                                          NDPTCflyer_9.15.2016_SMTT@Rochester,NY Updated 080816.pdf

  • Monday, August 08, 2016 8:57 AM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)

    This October 31-November 3rd course provides an opportunity for local officials responsible for administering their floodplain regulations. The course will focus on the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and concepts of floodplain management, maps and studies, ordinance administration, and the relationship between floodplain management and flood insurance.   For further information go to:  

    E0273 Managing Floodplain Development through NFIP.pdf

  • Monday, August 08, 2016 8:25 AM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)

    This 2-day workshop is intended for flood warning practitioners, owners and operators of existing or proposed hydrologic warning systems, emergency managers, public works officials, owners and operators of high hazard dams and levees, decision makers, and river authorities.  It will focus on technological advances and necessary considerations for developing and maintaining flood resilient communities in a changing climate.  Registration is at: 

    For further information please see:  NHWC_workshop_flyer_2016_3pnl-v7.pdf

  • Friday, August 05, 2016 11:04 AM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)

    “Preparing an Annual Recertification” Webinar on Tuesday, August 16th at 1pm ET.  Registrants can go to to sign-up.      For further information contact: Garrett Byma, CFM, ISO/CRS Specialist, ISO Community Hazard Mitigation, ,917-224-4059

  • Friday, August 05, 2016 8:51 AM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)


    (16/P73) TRENTON - Nearly four years after Superstorm Sandy, the Blue Acres Buyout Program has reached milestones of more than 500 property buyouts completed, including a closing on its first property in Downe Township, Cumberland County, and more than 800 buyout offers made, Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin announced today.

    Blue Acres buyouts have been under way in a number of flood-prone communities across New Jersey for more than three years, as recovery from Superstorm Sandy remains a steadfast commitment of the Christie Administration. The $300 million buyout program recently closed on its 500th property acquisition in Downe Township.

    "The Christie Administration's effort to protect lives and property from dangerous flooding has not wavered since Superstorm Sandy struck New Jersey," DEP Commissioner Bob Martin said. "The Blue Acres Buyout Program's many milestones, including the 500th buyout and more than 800 offers made, demonstrate our ongoing commitment to assist as many residents as possible by helping them leave flood-prone communities in order to improve their quality of life."

    Downe Township's property closing is just the first of 11 properties in the Delaware Bayshore community that are lined up for closing. An additional 12 homeowners have already indicated a desire to sell their properties to Blue Acres.

    Natalie Fisch, a school bus driver, and her husband, Don Fisch, who owns a drywall business, had lived at a high point on Bayview Road in Downe Township for approximately 15 years before deciding to pursue a buyout.

    The couple found that lower portions of their road experienced flooding during high tides and full moons, as well as during bad weather, and they grew increasingly concerned about the viability of the local water and sewer line infrastructure after Sandy hit.

    Since accepting their buyout, the couple has purchased a home on Osborn Island in Tuckerton, Ocean County. The ability to keep their boat in their backyard to go fishing and crabbing, and knowing that utility lines are underground, are important to her and her husband, Mrs. Fisch said.

    "Everything went so smooth for us," she said about the Blue Acres Buyout Program and process. "We've been blessed. I'd recommend the program to anyone in a bad flooding area that needs to get out."

    Since its launch in May 2013 as part of Superstorm Sandy recovery, the Blue Acres Buyout Program has secured funding to purchases properties in 14 municipalities, with buyouts under way in eight counties. Closings have been completed on 503 properties, of which 371 have been demolished. So far, offers have been made to 806 homeowners and accepted by 618.

    "Immediately following the devastation of Superstorm Sandy, Woodbridge Township went to work to assist homeowners in the hardest hit properties in our flood zone," said Woodbridge Mayor John E. McCormac. "Today, more than 175 Woodbridge Township home and property owners in the flood zone have applied to the Blue Acres program for property buyout relief, with 130 properties having been purchased at pre-Sandy value.

    "It goes without saying that the DEP and the Blue Acres program administrators have been incredibly responsive to the Township Administration and, even more importantly, to the residents who have been removed from harm's way and no longer reside in the flood zone.  And, the work of Blue Acres is not finished.  Blue Acres is committed to financing additional buyouts of the families that still remain in harm's way."

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HGMP); the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) Community Development Block Grant - Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) program; the Blue Acres fund and the State Land Acquisition (Urban) fund provide funding for buyouts. The DEP will continue to submit buyout applications to the federal government for additional properties on a rolling basis.

    Recently, FEMA recognized the Blue Acres Buyout program as a Best Practice, citing the program's Benefit Cost Analysis (BCA) approach to significantly reduce the number of properties requiring extensive and time-consuming reviews. Additionally, the program has negotiated more than $3.6 million in mortgage forgiveness on properties where the amount owned exceeds the home's value - an achievement recognized by HUD in 2015.

    Governor Christie designated the Blue Acres Buyout Program in 2013 to run the state's post-Sandy initiative to purchase homes from willing sellers in flood-prone areas, at pre-Sandy values. A special team expedites the buyout process, and includes individual case managers that work closely with homeowners to personally guide them through the process. After a Blue Acres purchase is completed, the homes are demolished and the land is permanently preserved as open space for recreation or conservation purposes.

    A number of Sandy-damaged communities were among the first to take advantage of the Blue Acres Buyout Program, including Sayreville Borough, South River Borough and Woodbridge Township in Middlesex County. Purchases also have been made in other flood-prone areas of the state including: Manville Borough in Somerset County; Linden in Union County; Lawrence Township and Downe Township in Cumberland County; East Brunswick Township and Old Bridge Township in Middlesex County; Pompton Lakes Borough in Passaic County; and Newark City in Essex County. The program has also moved into New Milford in Bergen County and Ocean Township in Monmouth County.

    Homeowners interested in selling their homes or who have questions about the buyout program may call the DEP's Blue Acres Buyout Program at (609) 984-0500.

    For more information on Blue Acres, visit

  • Friday, July 15, 2016 6:45 PM | Greg Westfall (Administrator)

    The latest CRS statistics is at:  CRS Stats.pdf

    Upcoming Training opportunities for CRS and registration information can be found at:

    The following are upcoming training opportunities:

    August 16 Preparing an Annual Recertification
    August 17 Developing Outreach Projects  (Activity 330)
    September 27 Preparing an Impact Adjustment Map
    September 28 Flood Warning & Response (Activity 610)
    October 18 Preparing for a Verification Visit
    October 19 CRS and Class 4 Prerequisites
    November 15 Introduction to the CRS
    November 16 Developing a PPI and a Insurance Coverage Improvement Plan
    December 20 Preparing for a Verification Visit
    December 21 CRS and Coastal Hazards

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