State Senator Patty Ritchie is announcing the Senate approved legislation Thursday that would make available $45 million in support to homeowners, businesses and local communities impacted by record flooding along the shores of Lake Ontario, the St. Lawrence River and other waterways throughout New York State.
The Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence Seaway Flood Relief and Recovery Grant Program, which comes as a result of negotiations with the Governor, will help provide relief to those needing it most as quickly as possible. Through the program, grants will be available to homeowners—including owners of multiple dwellings—small businesses, farms and not-for-profit organizations sustaining flood-related damage.
“From structural damages to lost business, for months now, people in shoreline communities have been suffering the devastating effects of record high water along Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River,” said Senator Patty Ritchie. “I know how critically important it is to provide those struggling with a helping hand and am pleased that through the Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence Seaway Flood Relief and Recovery Grant Program they will be able to receive the support they need to bounce back.”
Through the Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence Seaway Flood Relief and Recovery Grant Program, grants will be available of up to $50,000 for small businesses, homeowners, farms and not-for-profit organizations. Grants of up to $20,000 will be available to individuals looking for help with covering the cost of damages to second homes, like camps and cottages. Those looking for support to address damages to a second home must have an income of $275,000 or less. There is no income limit for those looking for funding for repairs to primary residences.
In addition, municipalities sustaining flood-related damage will be eligible for up to $1,000,000 for flood related repairs and restoration, as well as up to $500,000 for flood mitigation efforts.
The plan also provides local governments and school districts with special permission to cut property tax bills for affected property owners. That provision was modeled on separate legislation introduced by Senator Ritchie, which previously was approved by the Senate.
This is the latest effort by Senator Ritchie to assist those impacted by flooding. Recently, another measure she cosponsors (S.5902), which accelerates the availability of emergency funding for water infrastructure, was signed into law by the Governor.