Sandy caused more than $100 million in damages to Hoboken, according to the city's mayor, Dawn Zimmer. She presented her case for federal assistance before the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Businesses and Entrepreneurship Thursday.
She said more than 1,700 homes and hundreds of businesses were flooded because of the storm surge.
But she said the National Flood Insurance Program, under FEMA, is curtailing the amount of help many can receive because garden-style apartments or spaces are incorrectly identified as basements, even though many serve as primary residences or stores.
"Under FEMA's definition of basement, the coverage is greatly limited to only those things like the boiler, hot water tanks, and electrical control panels," she said. On top of that, she said, many businesses are reporting a 60% decline in business since the storm hit.
Zimmer is asking lawmakers for help navigating the system for those who've suffered damage to their homes and businesses.