Emergency Assistance for Madison and Oneida Flood Victims

As I'm sure you are aware, parts of Madison and Oneida Counties have been hit hard by floods as a result of our very wet weather. Many people's homes and businesses have been destroyed, a state of emergency remains, and a massive clean-up operation is underway. While Governor Cuomo will include both counties in a request to the federal government for funding, there is immediate need for help.

One of the best qualities about Central New York is its people, and our willingness to come together in times of crisis. I urge you to do what you can to assist. The Red Cross is on the ground in all of the affected areas, and they are looking for volunteers and donations. If you are interested in becoming a Red Cross volunteer and helping the victims of the floods in Madison and Oneida, please visit the Central New York Region office at 344 W. Genesee St., Syracuse, from 1 to 3 p.m. Monday or Tuesday to fill out the necessary paperwork. You may also call (315) 234-2200 during regular business hours to make arrangements.

To make a financial donation, visit www.redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS, or send a donation directly to the Central New York Region at 344 W. Genesee St., Syracuse, N.Y. 13202.

***Affected residents: Please pay close attention to updates from local officials. Some roads are still closed, and a flash flood watch remains in effect all day today (Monday). In addition, the Red Cross has set up a shelter at the Oneida Family YMCA at 701 Seneca St., Oneida, providing cots, blankets, food, counseling, support, and other necessities for the residents. The Red Cross will keep the shelters open until the residents are allowed to return safely to their homes, or have made arrangements to live elsewhere.

In addition, the State Department of Health is a good resource for flood safety information:

Please feel free to contact my office at 315-478-8745 or valesky@nysenate.gov if you have questions, concerns, or problems. Please be safe.