Funds for flood repairs requested

FONDA – Montgomery County and state leaders are seeking funds to help make repairs to area infrastructure after last month’s flooding that caused damage in excess of $250,000.

Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara and state Sen. Cecilia Tkaczyk sent a letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo dated June 26 seeking state and federal funds to offset the local costs of recovery from flooding that occurred earlier in the month.

“While the dollar amount may not seem high, the recovery costs, on top of last year’s devastating flooding, are just too much for these fiscally-stressed communities to handle, which is why we’re requesting any aid or assistance that can be mobilized at the state or federal level,” the letter to Cuomo’s office states.

The flooding June 13, caused by heavy rains, led to damage to culverts, ditches and roadways in the county. A minor mudslide occurred on McDonald Drive in Fort Johnson.

A preliminary damage report obtained from Santabarbara’s office shows damaged areas that need repair include roads in the towns of Amsterdam, Root, Glen, Palatine, Canajoharie, Florida and Mohawk.

Much of the repair work – which has been done or is planned – includes cleaning debris from pipes and roadways, repairing the shoulders of roads that washed out and replacing damaged pipes.

Montgomery County Emergency Management Director Jeff Smith said some of the repair work is already being done, while larger projects, such as reconstructing a wall in Canajoharie, are being held off until more funds are available.

Smith said the work that has been done will be reimbursed if the county gets money from the state or federal government.

Smith said $175,000 worth of damage needs to be reported before counties can request assistance. Smith said the Montgomery County total was calculated at $250,490.

Five homes on Argersinger Road in the town of Root were evacuated, along with residents of one home on Noonan Road in the town of Amsterdam. The homeowner at Noonan Road reported a section of his foundation near his porch was washed out by rains.

The cost of damages to these private residences has not yet been calculated, according to a press release from Santabarbara’s office.

Smith said in order for the county to get funds for private homeowners, $26.9 million of damage must be reported.