Individual Assistance after storm sought for Fulton County

Homeowners and businesses in Fulton County who suffered flood damage following Tropical Storm Lee ma

Homeowners and businesses in Fulton County who suffered flood damage following Tropical Storm Lee may soon see relief if their U.S. senators have their way.

Sen. Charles Schumer and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand today urged President Barack Obama and FEMA to quickly declare the county eligible for Individual Assistance. The qualification would provide grants and low-interest loans to help rebuild and recover from Tropical Storm Lee, which soaked the Northeast early last month.

“Individual homeowners and small business owners in Fulton County shouldn’t be left to shoulder this massive burden on their own,” said Schumer in a news release issued today.

“The road to recovery will be long and difficult, but FEMA assistance would lighten the load,” he said.

Gillibrand said in the release that it’s time to put the necessary resources on the ground where residents and families need them.

“Families and businesses in Fulton County are in dire need of help to dig out from this devastating storm and begin to recover,” she said. “Roads, bridges, homes and businesses are being washed away from massive flooding.”

After the first round of flooding from Tropical Storm Irene, neighboring Montgomery and Schoharie counties almost immediately qualified for Individual and Public Assistance because devastation was literally visible from the sky.

Fulton County saw only mild damage from Irene, said emergency officials at the time. But after the flooding brought on by Tropical Storm Lee a mere week after Irene, the county sustained much more damage the second time around.

Individual Assistance would make residents eligible for temporary housing and home repair grants, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other recovery programs.

In their letter to Obama and FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate, the senators expressed gratitude that New York was approved for a major disaster declaration following Lee, but asked for support in Fulton County.

“We have toured the damaged areas and talked to those who have lost so much and one thing is clear: Individuals and households cannot bear the brunt of this storm alone and it is time for the federal government to provide assistance to those who desperately need it.”

Categories: Schenectady County

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