Gov. Hochul announces $3 million for homeowners in Orange County to help after storm damage
Gov. Kathy Hochul announced on Tuesday that $3 million in funding will be available for homeowners in Orange County who are still suffering from flood damage.
“It's a lifeline providing critical repair grants to homeowners who meet the threshold,” she said.
The state’s Homes and Community Renewal will be overseeing the program. Homeowners could receive up to $50,000 for repairs. Gayle Margolin, of Highland Falls, says she plans to apply.
"This is like sewage contamination," she said of her home. “My husband lost all his band equipment.”
Without the state's lifeline, Margolin and her neighbors would have to wait weeks or months to learn if they're eligible for aid through FEMA.
Hochul, who made Tuesday’s announcement at Sacred Heart of Jesus Covenant School in Highland Falls, says FEMA is already assessing damage to local infrastructure. She says she expects the cost of those repairs to be reimbursed by FEMA.
"But what about the homeowners? Who's taking care of them? I doubt that most people have enough money in their bank account to cover unanticipated damage," she said.
State Emergency Management officials say they and representatives from FEMA have begun assessing damage to private homes.
New York's Homeland Security and Emergency Management commissioner says the Small Business Administration is also surveying the damage and is planning to help business owners rebuild. That assistance would likely come in the form of low-interest loans.
A spokesman for FEMA says anyone with damage to their homes should report that damage to their local Office of Emergency Management. That data is ultimately going to be shared with FEMA and will help the agency decide how much aid to provide homeowners.