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Hudson Valley Flood Recovery: Update

By Dave Lucas

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wamc/local-wamc-988109.mp3

New Paltz, NY – This morning's rain prompted The National Weather Service to issue a round of flash flood warnings --- heavy downpours throughout the region serving as reminders of the power of nature and the damage wrought by Tropical Storms Irene and Lee.
Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Dave Lucas has an update on the progress being made in communities still struggling to cope .

Flood-ravaged municipalities across New York have been busy rebuilding - it's a neighbor-helping-neighbor process - with state and federal agencies chipping in to provide relief...

New York City's Environmental Protection Commissioner Carter Strickland today announced that DEP will provide $1 million in funding to help West of Hudson businesses recover from flood damage. Statewide estimates of the damage as a result of Irene and Lee exceed $1 billion, with some of the most severely affected communities in New York City's watershed.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has a huge presence throughout the Hudson Valley : U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced FEMA has awarded Orange County public assistance to help rebuild and repair infrastructure damaged by tropical storm Lee. After this type of assistance was not made available in the President's initial emergency declaration, the Senators immediately called for Orange County to be added to the list of eligible counties.

FEMA will be present in the City of Poughkeepsie along with other state agencies, to assist those affected by flooding and other stormwater damage from Hurricane Irene, on October 2nd, 3rd, and 4th from 8am until 8pm in the Crannel Street parking lot behind the Dutchess County Department of Health.

In Hyde Park, town officials are trying to schedule repairs to 5 roads before the weather gets too cold... The town expects most of the money would be repaid through state and/or federal aid. The Superintendent of Highways and the Town Supervisor didn't return calls for comment: Supervisor Tom Martino told the Poughkeepsie Journal that the money for repairs will be withdrawn from the general fund and given to the town highway fund as a loan, repayment of which would be subject to receipt of disaster relief funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and/or the New York Office of Emergency Management.

FEMA public information officer Chris McKniff says 40 disaster recovery centers are currently operational. FEMA has also added Chemung County to the list as eligible for disaster assistance. McKniff notes that out in Central New York, a state and federal Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) will open in Herkimer at the Caroline Street WalMart on Friday, September 30, to assist individuals, households and businesses affected by Tropical Storm Lee.