Governor Hochul Announces Additional Approvals for Federal Disaster Assistance Following Preliminary Joint Damage Assessments in Multiple Counties Impacted by Remnants of Hurricane Ida
New York (STL.News) Governor Kathy Hochul announced Suffolk and Sullivan Counties are approved to be added to the previously declared Major Disaster Declaration as a result of the devastating floods caused by the remnants of Hurricane Ida earlier this month. Approval is based on joint damage assessments by New York State and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Both counties are now eligible to receive federal financial reimbursement for Public Assistance to help municipalities recover and rebuild publicly-owned infrastructure and facilities; Suffolk County also qualifies for the Individual Assistance Program.
Additional counties already approved for Public Assistance under the declaration include Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Queens, Richmond and Westchester Counties. Bronx, Kings, Nassau, Queens, Richmond and Westchester Counties also qualify for Individual Assistance, which provides direct relief for individuals and homeowners.
“We are working tirelessly with our partners at all levels of government to ensure that families and communities recovering from the effects of Ida get the help they need to rebuild,” Governor Hochul said. “We still have work to do, and with Suffolk and Sullivan counties now also qualifying for federal funding, I want to thank President Biden and FEMA for their continued support and for providing these critical resources to New Yorkers in need.”
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said, “I am pleased that Suffolk County’s request for a Major Disaster Declaration from FEMA has been swiftly approved so that we can deliver substantial relief for the thousands of businesses and residents in need of making essential repairs in the wake of Hurricane Ida. I appreciate the collaboration with New York State as we continue to recover from this extreme weather event.”
Sullivan County Manager Joshua Potosek said, “I thank Governor Hochul for living up to her promise to bring New Yorkers the resources they need to recover. This hurricane was one for the history books, and communities across our county and this state depend on compassionate leadership as they try to put their lives back together.”
Governor Hochul and the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services continue to work with federal, state, and local partners to ensure New Yorkers are provided with the resources and assistance to fully recover from the devastating effects of Hurricane Ida. Preliminary Damage Assessments continue to take place in additional counties that were impacted by Ida and the State will request additional counties receive assistance, if eligible.
A Major Disaster Declaration, requested by the Governor and signed by the U.S. President, allows for financial assistance from the federal government to provide disaster relief and allow communities to recover through either Public Assistance or a combination of Public and Individual Assistance. Public Assistance provides emergency assistance to save lives and protect property as well as funding debris removal and repairs to public buildings and infrastructure, including roads, bridges, schools, parks, hospitals, police stations, fire houses, water and waste watertreatment facilities and other publicly-owned facilities.
Individual Assistance provides direct support for individuals and homeowners. New Yorkers may also be able to receive funds for other uninsured or under-insured disaster-caused expenses and serious needs, such as repair or replacement of personal property or funds for moving and storage, or medical, dental, and child care. Homeowners and renters should make every effort to document their losses. In counties that qualify for Individual Assistance, eligible homeowners will work directly with FEMA to obtain funding. Assistance can include funds for temporary housing units, housing and driveway repairs, crisis counseling, unemployment assistance and legal services.
Governor Hochul previously announced the launch of the new online resource hub for impacted New Yorkers, available at ny.gov/Ida. The hub provides information on available assistance programs and where to find services such as shelter and access to food. Information on the site will be updated as more resources for New Yorkers become available. Additionally, the State is partnering with New York City to support Recovery Service Centers, which enlist the support of elected officials who represent impacted communities and provide information on available resources and assistance.
Governor Hochul also directed that $378 million in previously awarded hazard mitigation funding from FEMA be devoted to bolstering New York State’s infrastructure against extreme weather.
Governor Hochul encourages local officials in the impacted counties to continue working with county emergency managers to submit any resource needs directly into NY Responds, the state’s web-based system that enables both local governments and state agencies to submit and share vital emergency-related information and resource requests.