State Aid To Help Pick Up Repair Tab To Rebuild From Irene & Lee

ONEONTA, 04/11/12 – State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I – Oneonta) today applauded Governor Cuomo’s announcement that New York State will cover the local share of disaster response and recovery costs resulting from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee.

"Immediately after Irene and Lee hit I implored the governor to take this step, and I co-sponsored legislation that would require the state to pick up the local share of flood repair costs,” said Senator Seward.  “Communities have banded together to rebuild, and the state has been there every step of the way, but the mounting repair bills have been looming. Removing this substantial burden from the shoulders of local government and taxpayers is a vital step toward a full recovery both physically and fiscally."

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) usually covers 75 percent of eligible disaster response and recovery costs, and the remaining 25 percent is typically shared equally by the state and localities. Under the governor's direction, the state will pick up the local share for most eligible expenses, making $61 million available to 25 counties to cover costs associated with emergency shelter, road, water system and infrastructure repair, stream and riverbed mitigation, and other clean-up projects.

The state is able to cover the local share of costs through funding put in place by the legislature and additional federal funds requested by the governor.

Area counties receiving funds include:

County          Estimated Cost of          Local Share
                     Recovery Projects         (to be covered by state)

 Chenango     $12,590,751                   $1,573,844
 Delaware      $31.705,692                   $3,963,212
 Greene          $35,586,702                  $4,448,338
 Herkimer       $1,332,126                    $166,516
 Otsego          $12,196,474                  $1,524,559
 Schoharie      $102,577,294                $12,822,162
 Tompkins       $2,831,347                   $353,918

Senator Seward continues to pursue additional flood recovery measures including legislation (S.6060) that he is sponsoring which would offer income tax credits to property owners that sustained substantial damage during Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee.