Press-Republican

Weather News

June 18, 2013

Malone flood buyout sought

(Continued)

Along with the Lower Park Street proposal, Provost said he will send two letters of intent for mitigation of two other flood-related issues: the lack of water-monitoring equipment in Chasm Falls and Westville and perhaps Ballard Mill, and the stabilization of roadside banks on County Road 25 (Duane Street Road) between Hicks Road and Cox Road.

He said the monitoring equipment would cost between $30,000 and $40,000. It would not only relay daily water-level readings to his Emergency Services Dispatch Center but to the National Weather Service as well.

Cost estimates to mitigate the Route 25 problems have not been calculated yet.

DECLARED DISASTER

Funding is available starting with damages that occurred as of June 30, 2012, to the present, following presidential disaster declarations made for Hurricane Irene, Tropical Storm Lee and Superstorm Sandy.

The declaration allows the Federal Emergency Management Agency to offer money to states, which then open the fund stream up to counties and municipalities so they can carry out hazard-mitigation projects like the ones identified in Malone.

FEMA would reimburse 75 percent of the eligible costs, and the other 25 percent would come from in-kind services or provided materials or from property owners.

OWNERS’ DECISION

Town Supervisor Howard Maneely said four of the 10 impacted properties have signed on for the buyout and that three others plan to but haven’t filed paperwork yet.

He said he will meet again with those who had not been interested and explain the mitigation plan.

Eminent domain does not apply, so the town or county cannot take possession of the reluctant owners’ damaged homes.

But officials can send code-enforcement officers in to possibly condemn the buildings or cite the owners for health and safety violations, giving them 30 days to bring their property up to proper code or face fines and penalties.

Provost said the health and safety of the homeowners involved is the most important aspect of the mitigation.

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