People stand with an American flag during a remembrance ceremony along the beachfront damaged by hurricane Sandy in October 2012 in the Rockaways section of the borough of Queens in New York October 27, 2013.
Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

Schumer: ‘Spigot is open’ for Sandy relief funds

Updated

Hurricane victims should begin to receive more federal aid a year after Superstorm Sandy landed in New Jersey, New York Sen. Chuck Schumer said on Tuesday’s Morning Joe.

“The spigot is now open and the money should start flowing,” he said on the one-year anniversary of the storm.

Debate in Congress halted the release of federal aid money to victims for months. Last year concluded without an official recovery package granted to states affected by the storm. The first round of Community Development Block Grants wasn’t released by the government until May.

After landing near Brigantine, N.J., on Oct. 29, 2012, the late-season hurricane hit 23 other states and cost the country at least $50 billion in damages.

Now a year later, the majority of residents have moved back into their homes and many businesses have reopened.

“But for the most part, there is still a long way to go,” Katy Tur, NBC News correspondent, said Tuesday.

Storm-stricken communities continue to rebuild. The government focused the first year on recovery efforts by clearing debris and finding homes for residents. The second year will be important for the rebuilding process, Schumer said. Residents are rebuilding their homes on elevated land and communities are constructing dunes to protect areas near water against future storms.

“It has taken too long and too many people have had to wait,” he said. “But I think the second year will be a very, very good year.”

Watch more on Morning Joe.

Morning Joe, 10/29/13, 8:13 AM ET

Struggling a year after Sandy

NBC’s Katy Tur reports live from Sea Bright, New Jersey on the year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy.

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Schumer: 'Spigot is open' for Sandy relief funds

Updated