SCHUMER ANNOUNCES, FOLLOWING HIS PUSH, TOWN OF UNION WILL RECEIVE FULL FED FUNDING FOR REPAIRS MADE TO IMPORTANT ROADWAY THAT WAS SEVERELY DAMAGED IN TROPICAL STORM LEE – SCHUMER URGED FEMA TO STEP UP TO PLATE & APPROVE APPEAL AFTER FEDS INITIALLY DENIED TOWN ADDITIONAL $100K IT DESPERATELY NEEDED FOR REPAIRS & REBUILDING
Struble Road Is A Major Thoroughfare In Town Of Union & Was Severely Damaged During Tropical Storm Lee – Floodwaters Overwhelmed Road’s Drainage Pipe & Washed Away a 50-Foot Stretch Of Road
In 2012, FEMA Approved Initial $290K In Fed Funds For Town Of Union To Repair Roadway, But Town Also Needed To Replace Drainage Pipe To Guard Against Future Storms – FEMA Denied Town’s Application For Reimbursement For The Additional $100K in Hazard Mitigation Efforts, Until Schumer Stepped In & Urged Feds To Approve The Appeal
Schumer: Town Of Union Will Finally See Check In The Mail For Struble Road Repairs & Rebuilding
U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today announced that, following his push, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has approved an additional $100,000 in funding for the Town of Union in Broome County for repairs made to Struble Road. Schumer explained that this road is an important thoroughfare in the town but was severely damaged in Tropical Storm Lee when the road’s drainage pipe was overwhelmed by floodwaters. This caused a 50-foot stretch of the road to be washed away, creating a massive chasm that significantly disrupted resident travel following the storm. Schumer said the Town of Union immediately got to work to repair the roadway, and received FEMA approval for funding in 2012, and approval of $295,580.08 after they completed the repairs and submitted their final paperwork. However, at the same time, FEMA also denied the town’s application for reimbursement of hazard mitigation efforts and other project costs when the town replaced the Struble Road drainage pipe with a larger culvert to prevent similar destruction in the future. The Town submitted an appeal of FEMA’s decision, and Schumer recently successfully intervened, arguing that this measure was aimed at guarding against future damage.
“After months of red tape, we were finally able to break through the bureaucracy and have FEMA approve this appeal, which will ensure the Town of Union is reimbursed in full for its repairs made to Struble Road, including the replacement of the drainage pipe that will guard against future storm-generated destruction. It is great news for the Town of Union, and I am pleased that FEMA has heeded our call to reimburse the town for hazard mitigation efforts to build this road back stronger for the next storm,” said Schumer. “I am pleased to announce today that the town will finally receive all it is due.”
Schumer explained that this FEMA funding will bring the total project cost to approximately $394,654.67 for costs associated with engineering, administrative costs, repair and now hazard mitigation. During Tropical Storm Lee in September 2011, the Town of Union saw vast swathes of land flooded, homes washed out, and roads and other critical pieces of public infrastructure were seriously damaged. Struble Road, an expansive roadway located in the population center of the town, experienced great devastation and the town worked quickly to repair it and guard against future storms by replacing the drainage pipe. Schumer said replacing and improving this section of roadway was necessary to avoid long-term travel disruptions for residents. Schumer said this additional $99,074.59 in funds will help prevent the Town of Union from having to pass along the financial burden to taxpayers. The total project cost of $394,654.67 includes a 75% federal cost-share.
“On behalf of the residents of the Town of Union, I would like to thank Senator Chuck Schumer for his support in securing FEMA approval for the reimbursement of almost $100,000.00. The funding deficit was from a large project to replace a culvert on Struble Road damaged in September of 2011 due to heavy rains from Tropical Storm Lee. The importance of the FEMA reimbursement is that it provides the expected financial funding. Securing this reimbursement, which was under appeal for over a year, protects the Town and its residents from any financial burden from this culvert project,” said Rose A. Sotak, Supervisor for the Town of Union.
A copy of Schumer’s letter to FEMA appears below:
Dear Administrator Fugate:
I write to urge the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to approve the Town of Union’s appeal of FEMA’s determination regarding repairs and hazard mitigation upgrades made to Struble Road, which was initially damaged during flooding in September 2011.
In September 2011, Tropical Storm Lee brought heavy rain and flooding to communities across New York’s Southern Tier, including to the Town of Union in Broome County. The Town of Union saw vast swathes of land flooded, homes washed out, and roads and other critical pieces of public infrastructure were seriously damaged. Struble Road, an expansive roadway located in the population center of the town, experienced great devastation. Floodwaters – exacerbated when water flowing from an emergency spillway overwhelmed the pipe under Struble Road – wiped away a 50-foot stretch of the road and the land it was on, creating a massive chasm and disrupting resident travel.
The Town of Union worked diligently to rebuild after the devastation of September 2011, including replacing the Struble Road drainage pipe with a larger culvert to prevent similar destruction in the future. I commend the town for their foresight in incorporating hazard mitigation into their repair efforts. I appreciate FEMA’s assistance throughout this process and urge the expeditious review and approval of the Town of Union’s appeal.
Thank you for your attention to this critical project. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me or my staff.
Charles E. Schumer
United States Senator
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