Herkimer, Otsego, Schoharie and Montgomery Counties to receive emergency funding for highway flood damage from Hurricane Irene

By WKTV News

NEW YORK - U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand have announced that the Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration is releasing $5 million in emergency relief money for New York State after Hurricane Irene.

Specifically, this funding will help fund repairs to washed out roads and bridges, debris deposits on roadways, damaged roadway surfaces and more. Schumer and Gillibrand applaud the DOT for its allocation of funding to New York, as it will provide critical aid to the state in its rebuilding efforts from these devastating storms.

“This Department of Transportation funding will get New York on the road to recovery after Hurricane Irene,” said Schumer. “These storms caused massive flooding and serious damage to many of New York’s roadways in the past month, which had a negative impact on local economies, homes, and businesses. With this funding, New York can get to work on making the repairs necessary to get our roads and highways up and running again.”

“This is a step forward to ensuring our communities can recover from Hurricane Irene,” said Senator Gillibrand. “I saw firsthand the trail of devastation these storms left on our communities, and the need to rebuild our crumbling bridges and washed out roads. Across New York – the North Country, Capital Region, Mohawk Valley, Hudson Valley, Southern Tier, and Long Island – no one can question the devastation these storms left in these communities. This is a good start to help our recovery.”

New York suffered flooding and substantial damage to roads and bridges from Hurricane Irene’s rainfall beginning on August 26. NYSDOT will use quick release funds to expedite emergency repairs to roads, highways and bridges in 31 counties throughout the state. NYSDOT estimates that overall damage to federal-aid highways from these floods will likely exceed $100 million. FHWA's emergency relief program provides funds for the repair or reconstruction of roads and bridges damaged by natural disasters or catastrophic events. Quick release funding through the emergency relief program is designed as a ‘down payment’ to meet the state’s most immediate needs and is later supplemented by traditional emergency relief funds.

Schumer and Gillibrand noted that typical damage in New York included washed out roadways and bridges, debris deposits on roadways, damaged culverts, and damaged roadway surfaces. The following counties were affected by this storm: Albany, Bronx, Clinton, Columbia, Delaware, Dutchess, Essex, Franklin, Greene, Hamilton, Herkimer, Kings, Montgomery, Nassau, New York, Orange, Otsego, Putnam, Queens, Rensselaer, Richmond, Rockland, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Suffolk, Sullivan, Ulster, Warren, Washington, and Westchester, and could benefit from this funding.

The funding for New York is being made available through the DOT’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Emergency Relief Funding program. Quick release emergency funds provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) will be used to reimburse the state and counties for the cost of repairs. FHWA's emergency relief program provides funds for the repair or reconstruction of roads and bridges damaged by natural disasters or catastrophic events.

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