Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

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July 18, 2013

City works on aid plan

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal —

A team consisting of city officials and residents will be putting together a plan regarding flood aid for private property owners who suffered losses from the June 28 storm that swamped parts of the city.

And once that plan is ready, the state will come to Lockport to assess each individual case, said Mayor Michael W. Tucker. Tucker was in Albany on Thursday for a conference concerning aid for homeowners affected by the June 28 flooding.

So, the city will continue to collect all the information it can from property owners, Tucker said. Homeowners should document and itemize all flood-related damages, then have those documents notarized. They should then turn those documents in to city hall.

Homeowners should be aware that the state will thoroughly check everything, Tucker said.

"Albany will come in and do an assessment for each," he said. "When they're giving tax dollars they want to make sure it's justified."

Tucker said the process could take up to eight months, but there's a chance Niagara County could receive money in a much shorter time period. 

Most of Thursday's conference was geared toward the Mohawk Valley, where the counties of Herkimer, Montgomery and Oneida saw heavy flooding in late June and early July.

"It was utter devastation there," Tucker said. "A lot of homes were lost."

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday the state will provide $16 million to homeowners, business operators and farmers in five flood-stricken upstate counties that were declared disaster areas after late June rains but were denied federal aid.

Niagara County is to receive $2 million. Herkimer and Montgomery counties will get $4 million each and Madison and Oneida counties will be given $3 million each.

It's unknown how much Lockport would receive of the $2 million, but it stands to reason the city would receive the majority. Tucker estimated that 98 percent of the damage in Niagara County occurred in the city.

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