STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Whitesboro residents voice concerns, ask for help from village officials

At the first Whitesboro Village board meeting since the Halloween flood, many residents voiced their concerns and asked village officials for help.

Posted: Nov 12, 2019 11:34 PM

WHITESBORO, N.Y. - At the first Whitesboro Village board meeting since the Halloween flood, many residents showed up to voice their concerns and ask village officials for help.

The meeting was held at the Whitesboro Fire Department to accommodate the larger number of residents that were expected to show up. There were over 50 residents that were at Tuesday night's meeting, many residents are still without gas and electric, some without a home.

Everyone expressing their frustration, including the village's mayor, because they've been through this time and time again.

The mayor is asking the federal government to come in and buyout the homes that have been destroyed, even if that means losing tax roll money. He says his residents and their health and well being is more important to him than a tax base.

"These people haven't suffered just one flood, they've suffered flood and flood after flood, there's no longer any knots to tie at the end of the rope to hang on to," Mayor Bob Friedland said. "They can't hear excuses and solutions other than a buyout, they need answers they need financial assistance now so they can go someplace else and start life and not have to worry about when it rains, am I going to get flooded out and lose everything."

Vincent Turczyn has been a Whitesboro resident since 2002. He says he's been through six flood, and each one has gotten worse, but he agrees with the mayor that something needs to be done now to help the residents who have been dealing with so much.

"It's good to hear that the mayor is supportive of potential buyouts because I think thats ultimately what has to happen for some of us," Turczyn said. "It's nice to hear that they're still going to try to finish the flood benches, it's good to see that they want to do stuff but I know that it's not a qucik fix, there's no quick fix here."

Whitestown Town Supervisor Shaun Kaleta was at the meeting, defending the Sauquoit Creek Channel and Floodplain Restoration project. Kaleta spoke about the project, and that the floodplain benches that have been completed did make a difference, but that was only phase one. Phase two is expected to start in early 2020. Kaleta says while this isn't a quick fix, it will be a long term solution to the problem once all of the floodplain benches are complete.

The mayor says right now there are at least 18 homes deemed unlivable and 50 homes without gas and electric. He says he will continue to make phone calls to elected officials, including the governor, to try and get help for the people in the village, but he believes the ultimate solution is for FEMA to come in and buyout the houses.

That process wouldn't be a quick or easy one, because it would take three to five years if a buyback was approved, and the state has to meet $29.6 million in damages for FEMA to come in.

The mayor also says he is working on other solutions to help prevent this devastation, such as a siren to notify people of a pending disaster. He says the village is still working on those avenues, and he'd love to hear from anyone who has any other ideas.

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1619924

Reported Deaths: 47264
CountyCasesDeaths
Queens2073098698
Kings2060299023
Suffolk1602923054
Nassau1459852896
Bronx1411745821
Westchester1061292081
New York1012503863
Erie644141594
Richmond561741564
Monroe52122980
Rockland38138886
Orange36334720
Onondaga32151622
Dutchess21968406
Albany20620328
Oneida19583475
Niagara15156313
Broome14521335
Saratoga11796145
Schenectady10740177
Ulster9898227
Rensselaer8902131
Putnam824486
Chautauqua7257122
Chemung6408130
Oswego595689
Ontario573188
Steuben5463137
St. Lawrence538381
Cayuga533388
Jefferson472463
Sullivan468959
Herkimer4534106
Wayne442564
Genesee4372118
Cattaraugus435176
Madison380684
Clinton350726
Livingston348455
Tompkins342742
Columbia336094
Fulton327281
Montgomery3137105
Cortland311260
Allegany286981
Warren280755
Wyoming278549
Tioga277956
Greene260970
Orleans243380
Chenango239769
Otsego230743
Washington229552
Lewis204630
Franklin200812
Seneca157453
Delaware147833
Essex132826
Schoharie118312
Yates101126
Schuyler85712
Hamilton2792
Unassigned219119
Out of NY0191
Rome
Partly Cloudy
37° wxIcon
Hi: 36° Lo: 17°
Feels Like: 37°
Binghamton
Partly Cloudy
35° wxIcon
Hi: 36° Lo: 17°
Feels Like: 30°
Rome
Partly Cloudy
37° wxIcon
Hi: 39° Lo: 20°
Feels Like: 37°
Rome
Partly Cloudy
37° wxIcon
Hi: 33° Lo: 18°
Feels Like: 37°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
2021 Golfer's Paradise Card - 21 Courses for only $99.99
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve