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Ten new state positions to be created to better prepare the state for disasters

By GARY LIBERATORE

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - As a result of the numerous severe weather-related incidents in New York State over the past three years, the federal government wants to better prepare every region of the state for a future event.

That preparation includes creating 10 brand-new regional positions called voluntary agency liaisons, one of which will be based at the Parkway Senior Center in Utica.

If you didn't know it, the Parkway Senior Center is home to one of 10 regional volunteer centers across the state, the Mohawk Valley Regional Volunteer Center.

It serves six counties: Oneida, Herkimer, Fulton, Montgomery, Otsego and Schoharie.

The person in the new position of voluntary agency liaison (VAL) will help coordinate the volunteer efforts in their region during a disaster from beginning to end.

Parkway Senior Center Executive Director Kelly Walters says such a person could have helped during this summer's big storm that hit much of the Mohawk Valley.

The funding for the 10 positions across the state is coming from the Federal Corporation for National and Community Service, which decided there was a need for the voluntary agency liaisons based on the Regional Volunteer Centers' response during the recent disasters in New York State.

According to Walters, Governor Cuomo wants the voluntary agency liaison positions filled within about a month.

If you are interested in applying for the local position, Walters says it pays between $30,000 and $35,000, and those hiring would like someone with disaster services and volunteer management experience.

The VALs will work to build relationships among federal and state government, and voluntary, faith-based and community entities on a regional level.

For more information on applying, just log on to mohawkvalleyvolunteers.org.

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