U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, also a Democrat, said about 3,000 homes were severely damaged in the state, including about 1,000 left uninhabitable. He said he wants to make sure the costs of the storm are not forgotten."The effort here has to be more than just recover and repair," Blumenthal said. "The new normal is catastrophic storms, and we need to be prepared for the new normal." The executive director of the Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force, Laurel Blatchford, assured officials the state has not been forgotten and the federal government will continue to provide support. The task force was established by President Barack Obama in December to help local communities rebuild and better withstand future storms.