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Will money run out for Lake Ontario flood victims?

Flooded house
Kathleen Thomas for North Country Public Radio
Flooded house

As a deadline approaches for Lake Ontario flood victims to seek state aid, there are indications that the money may be stretched thin.

At the eastern end of the lake, about $1 million already has been committed to 45 homeowners in a three-county area, WRVO reports.

But more than 900 homeowners have applied for help in Oswego, Jefferson and St. Lawrence counties, says Gary Beasley, who heads a nonprofit administering area flood grants.

And because the area's share of state aid is $5 million, it won't come close to covering all homeowners.

"If you look at the sheer numbers, it looks like a lot of people will have trouble getting assistance," Beasley told WRVO. 

Homeowners and others who sustained damage have until 5 p.m. Friday, Sept. 29, to apply for state aid.

If the money runs dry, the state could allocate more money. New York officials also are seeking aid from the federal government.

New York lawmakers have scheduled a hearingabout the flooding Oct. 10 in Oswego County. The hearing will cover a wide range of issues, including the cause of the flooding, which lasted for months.

New York's Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence Seaway Flood Relief and Recovery Grant Program provides $45 million in funding to homeowners, small businesses, farms, not-for-profits and municipalities. 

Copyright 2017 Great Lakes Today

Dave Rosenthal
Dave Rosenthal is Managing Editor of Great Lakes Today, a collaboration of public media stations that is led by WBFO, ideastream in Cleveland in WXXI in Rochester, and includes other stations in the region.
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