In addition to his broad record of legislative achievement, Chris has helped lead the fight for New Jersey and his constituents time and time again. When there’s a tough, important job to do, the people of central New Jersey call Chris Smith.

Fought Successfully To Protect Lakehurst Naval Air Station, It’s 3000+ Civilian Jobs and Vital National Security Missions From Closure

“It’s been a full court press since November,” said U.S. Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R., N.J.), who coordinated the effort. “Lakehurst has dodged a major bullet.”

Lakehurst Is Spared From Closure As Panel Opposes Recommendation The Pentagon Had Backed A Shutdown. The Reversal, If Upheld, Saves 3,100 Jobs At The Facility.

In a surprise move, the federal commission charged with streamlining the military bucked Defense Department recommendations yesterday and spared the Lakehurst Naval Air Warfare Center with its more than 3,000 jobs.

Only 15 percent of all Defense Department recommendations have been reversed in the two previous rounds of base closures, in 1991 and 1993, but the Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission (BRAC) voted 7-1 to retain Lakehurst, which was slated to close.

“It’s been a full court press since November,” said U.S. Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R., N.J.), who coordinated the effort. “Lakehurst has dodged a major bullet.”

Losing the base and its 3,100 jobs would have had a disastrous effect on the local economy, said Smith, who estimated that Lakehurst pours $91 million into the economy of central New Jersey.

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Click here to read excerpts from an article about the closure: Lakehurst Is Spared From Closure As Panel Opposes Recommendation The Pentagon Had Backed A Shutdown. The Reversal, If Upheld, Saves 3,100 Jobs At The Facility.

Lead the Successful Effort to Preserve Security of Naval Weapons Station Earle and the Surrounding Community by Halting a Civilian Housing Proposal for the Base

“I’m pleased to announce that the Navy has suspended the record of decision concerning all matters pertaining to making Earle Laurelwood housing complex open to unvetted civilians,” U.S. Rep. Christopher Smith (R-4th Dist.) said today.

U.S. Navy withdraws plans for private housing at weapons station in Monmouth County

The U.S. Navy has withdrawn plans to allow private housing at its weapons station in Monmouth County, ending a decade-long battle by residents and legislators who feared the plan would pose security and budgetary concerns.

“I’m pleased to announce that the Navy has suspended the record of decision concerning all matters pertaining to making Earle Laurelwood housing complex open to unvetted civilians,” U.S. Rep. Christopher Smith (R-4th Dist.) said today.

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Click here to read excerpts from a news report on the cancellation of the proposal: U.S. Navy withdraws plans for private housing at weapons station in Monmouth County

Advocated Relentlessly for New Vital DoD Projects and Facilities at Joint-Base

The U.S. Army’s fiscal year 2013 budget, released yesterday, includes a $47 million earmark for construction of a new aviation hangar at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, a move that U.S. Rep. Chris Smith (R-Hamilton) has been supporting for more than four years.

Fort Dix to get $47 million aviation hangar

The state-of-the-art hangar would house a communications and electronics research and engineering center on the former Lakehurst Naval Air Engineering Station portion of the joint base.

The replacement is a long-term project that Smith says will help to protect the current and future work and potential of the program.

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Click here to read excerpts from a news report on the cancellation of the proposal: Fort Dix to get $47 million aviation hangar

Saved Dozens of Crucial Firefighting Jobs in Trenton by Assisting Fire Department With Homeland Security Grants

The Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response (SAFER) grant will fund the jobs for the next two years, saving the firefighters from impending layoffs, Smith said. The department will also hire nine entry-level firefighters to make up for expected retirements.

The city has been awarded a $14.9 million FEMA grant that will save the jobs of 55 firefighters and provide funding to hire nine more, U.S. Rep. Chris Smith announced today.

The Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response (SAFER) grant will fund the jobs for the next two years, saving the firefighters from impending layoffs, Smith said. The department will also hire nine entry-level firefighters to make up for expected retirements.

“This FEMA grant will save 55 Trenton firefighters facing layoffs in January, and help maintain staffing levels needed to protect the city residents and the state capital,” Smith said. “The residents of Trenton will be safer because of this grant and 55 firefighters and their families can tear up the pink slips that may already be in the mail or that they may have received recently.”

Two years ago, Smith (R-Robbinsville) helped secure a $13.6 million SAFER grant, which was used to fund 61 firefighter jobs and stave off layoffs.

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Click here to read excerpts from the article Trenton receives $14.9 million FEMA grant to save the jobs of 55 firefighters

Helped Those Affected by Post 9/11 Anthrax Attacks on Mail Facilities By Forging A Compromise With Financial Services Industry on Penalty Waivers for Consumers

Leaders of the financial services industry agreed to waive penalties for people whose mail is delayed due to the anthrax crisis–or any similar future scare–whenever the U.S. Postal Service determines there.

Leaders of the financial services industry agreed to waive penalties for people whose mail is delayed due to the anthrax crisis–or any similar future scare–whenever the U.S. Postal Service determines there has been a significant disruption of mail.

The pact is based on legislation introduced by Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.), whose constituents have been affected by the closure of an anthrax-contaminated mail-processing center Hamilton, N.J.

Smith’s bill would have prohibited creditors from imposing late fees, increasing interest rates or downgrading the credit record of anybody whose mail was disrupted by “a biological, chemical or radiological attack.”

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Click here to read excerpts from the article Trenton receives $14.9 million FEMA grant to save the jobs of 55 firefighters

Spearheaded Effort to Lobby FEMA to Reverse It’s Previous Ruling and Dispense Aid to Rebuild Ocean Grove Boardwalk After Hurricane Sandy

A year after other New Jersey boardwalks destroyed by Hurricane Sandy were repaired, Ocean Grove finally got its boardwalk completed in what local officials describe was a “miracle” reversal by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to approve funding for the work…
Rep. Chris Smith (R-4th Dist.), who spearheaded the effort on the federal level to reverse FEMA’s decision, said the persistence of the town, county and state officials paid off.

Ocean Grove residents have plenty to celebrate this Fourth of July and not just because it’s a holiday.

A year after other New Jersey boardwalks destroyed by Hurricane Sandy were repaired, Ocean Grove finally got its boardwalk completed in what local officials describe was a “miracle” reversal by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to approve funding for the work.

As a section of Neptune Township, Ocean Grove is a seaside community whose oceanfront is owned and maintained by the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association, a non-profit religious organization.

Like other oceanfront communities trying to rebuild their boardwalks after Sandy hit in October 2012, the Camp Meeting Association asked FEMA for financial aid, but the federal agency turned it down – twice – saying the association is a nonprofit organization and the boardwalk is used solely for recreational purposes.

“We are so appreciative to FEMA and I genuinely mean that we are thanking a federal agency,” said Dale Whilden, president of the association. “Their willingness to hear the appeal, to sit down and discuss the matters involved meant so much and turned the tide.”

FEMA was finally swayed when a group of federal and state lawmakers unearthed documents saying the boardwalk has been recognized as public property and dedicated as a public roadway since at least 1908.

The storm destroyed about a third of Ocean Grove’s nearly half-mile of boardwalk, which is connected to Bradley Beach to the south and Asbury Park to the north. The major repairs were made to the middle of the boardwalk. FEMA’s $2.3 million to Ocean Grove includes $1.13 million for that project as well as money for three other recovery projects, said J.P. Gradone, executive director and chief operating officer of the camp meeting association.

Rep. Chris Smith (R-4th Dist.), who spearheaded the effort on the federal level to

reverse FEMA’s decision, said the persistence of the town, county and state officials paid off.

“If you read their denials, it was as ironclad as ‘no’ could be,” he said.

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Click here to read excerpts from the article Ocean Grove boardwalk called a 'miracle' project after FEMA funding was denied twice

Advocated for the Deployment of Veterans Mobile Readjustment Center to New Jersey to Outreach to Vets Across State

   Centers will assist veterans and families participating in programs that can support them as they transition into civilian life, including counseling and employment assistance. 

 Worked Successfully to Obtain Critical Federal Designation & Support for Local Health Center

CHEMED (Center for Health, Education, Medicine & Dentistry) provides the surrounding community with extensive medical and health services, including internal medicine, pediatric services, dentistry, behavioral health services and more, all at one single facility. CHEMED serves all patients, including the underinsured and uninsured.

Led Successful Effort to bring comprehensive senior-health care plan PACE (Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly) to New Jersey

The PACE program allows seniors to maintain the independence of living in their own homes while also enjoying the benefit of a team of doctors, nurses, physical therapists and other health experts who are dedicated to managing all their care at their own home, for a set fee paid by Medicare and Medicaid. The center additionally provides meals and recreational activities.

Worked Successfully to Bring Federal Support For Fire Service Communications to Mercer County

The $2.4 million FEMA grant allows Mercer-area fire services units to share a single communications system, allowing greater coordination of communication in an emergency situation.

Led Successful Effort to Bring Federal Support to Ocean Health Initiatives (OHI), a Community Health Facility

Ocean County residents, including uninsured and underinsured, come to OHI access to comprehensive primary and preventative health care, including dental care as well as social services programs.

Personally Appealed to Bring Federal Grants to Beleaguered Trenton Police Department

The $3 million grant is designed to improve safety and increase the amount of officers on the streets of New Jersey’s capital. It is especially remarkable that conditions of the rant stipulate a requirement that new police personnel hired with grant funding must be veterans of the United States armed forces who served at least 180 days of active service.

Led Successful Effort to Secure Federal Support for Soldier On program to combat veteran homelessness

Soldier On is a provider of community-based homeless and at-risk veterans’ housing programs with 15 years of experience successfully creating innovative homeownership opportunities in underserved areas. Grant funding is provided through the VA’s Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program.

Helped Secure Funding for New Security Gate at Earle Naval Weapons Station

The new gate comprehensively improves the security at NWS Earle, including gate access realignment, upgraded fencing along the roadway; additional protection around the guardhouse area and removal of previous guardhouse and parking areas. Work on the gate also included additional lighting, solar panels for efficient power use, raised medians, a vehicle inspection shelter, and additional logistical upgrades.

Teamed with National Alzheimer’s Association to Hold “Listening Session” in Wall Twp.

The session was designed to allow national lawmakers and advocates can here directly from those affected by the disease and their families as they continue to develop new policies to counter it. The Alzheimer’s incidence rate in the U.S. is expected to triple in the next few decades, and will cost approximately over $1 trillion a year before 2050.

Met with House Speaker to Advocate for Expedited Votes on Sandy Aid Packages

Subsequent to a meeting with Congressman Chris Smith (NJ-04) and other House members from effected areas, House Speaker John Boehner agreed to schedule a vote on Jan. 4 on a measure to direct an estimated $9.7 billion to the National Flood Insurance Program to aid victims hurt by Superstorm Sandy. Two additional votes would follow a week later.

Championed Construction of National Guard Training Facility at Sea Girt

Once completed, the new training facility will assist Guardsmen and Reservists from all over the northeast in preparing for all kinds of missions, whether they involve combat, natural disasters or man-made emergencies.

Spearheaded N.J. Delegation Effort to Meet with HUD Officials on behalf of Sandy-affected homeowners

HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan agreed to meet with the NJ delegation after a letter by Representatives Smith (NJ-04), Frank LoBiondo (NJ-02), Jon Runyan (NJ-03), Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ-11), and Leonard Lance (NJ-07) pointed out that the New Jersey Rehabilitation, Reconstruction, Elevation and Mitigation (RREM) program received more than 15,000 applications and had 4,000 displaced, eligible homeowners on a waitlist. These homeowners would have forfeited reimbursement had they begun reconstruction without having completed the requisite historic and environmental reviews.

Fought Successfully for FEMA grants to Reimburse Ocean County Government for Funds Spent During Sandy Response and Relief Efforts

The funding granted by FEMA is dedicated to the support the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office and its efforts after the storm, including traffic control, anti-crime efforts, assistance to fire departments, emergency medical services, search & rescue operations, special measures to protect against crime and looting, traffic management, barricades, and security at a wide variety of different facilities throughout the County.

Successfully Petitioned FEMA to Switch Post-Sandy Recovery Efforts to a 90-10 Federal-Local Cost Share Split

Smith requested the change to a 90-10 split from a 75-25 split at a meeting with FEMA commissioner Craig Fugate in his Washington office. Fugate approved it several weeks after the meeting took place.

Assisted Isles’ YouthBuild Program Secured Federal Support To Help At-Risk Youth

YouthBuild focuses on educational, vocational & leadership skill training for at-risk youths over a 40-month cycle. Smith directly requested the funding from Assistant Secretary of Labor Jane Oates.

Continues to Shepherd Wreck Pond Clean-Up Efforts With Multiple Agencies and Policymakers

Wreck Pond, in Spring Lake, N.J., has filled in with silt and pollutant materials, and causes damage to both nearby beaches and nearby homes when it overflows during storms such as Hurricane Sandy. Smith, who has been working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for years to mitigate problems at the Pond, praised the release of an USACE feasibility study for clean-up efforts in June 2013, as part of a Sandy recovery package.