Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno visits Hoboken to send message: Businesses are open, but some still need help
Jan 18, 2013 | 2692 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
HOBOKEN — Lt. Governor and Secretary of State Kim Guadagno visited Zack’s oak bar and restaurant in Hoboken on Thursday. Guadagno surveyed the damage to the restaurant at 232 Willow St. and talked with co-owner Sheila Nisler as well as Mayor Dawn Zimmer.

Guadagno looked at the water damage to the bar and walls and also asked to see the basement. According to Nisler, Zack’s was very fortunate during the storm due to its location in the Hoboken Hospital grid. Zack’s was powered up and back open the Saturday after the storm. However, the restaurant still needs to shut down temporarily to make repairs. And flood insurance money has not yet come in for them.

“We have no idea what it’s going to cost. Our bar alone is from the late 1800s and we want to keep it because there is not much of that old charm left here,” said Nisler.

Zimmer talked to Nisler and Guadagno about the current difficulties with the national flood insurance programs. Zimmer has been advocating for changes to flood insurance in urban environments ever since basement dwellings began to get denied after Hurricane Sandy.

Zimmer also spoke of the challenge that Hoboken currently faces trying to send out a dual message that Hoboken is still in need of help, yet is also open for business.

Guadagno said she has been speaking with the Department of Banking and Insurance in order to have them work harder to streamline the process of getting people their money.

Guadagno also said she’d like to see the Hoboken Irish Festival turn into a "shop small business" incentive.

Zimmer stressed the importance of Hoboken residents registering with Rebuild Hoboken, not only for grants, but also so that the city has their information. After businesses and individuals get help, Zimmer said, she will focus on how to distribute grant money preemptively to make Hoboken more resilient for the next storm.

“We are going to try for grant money for things like our own high water vehicle, as well as designing a micro generator system for senior buildings, the housing authority, police and fire stations,” said Zimmer.

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