County hopes state will match flood funds

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Oneida County is still waiting to learn whether the state will contribute money to the county funds that have been set aside for flood mitigation efforts following recent severe storms that inundated parts of the county with water.

County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. is hoping the state government will match the $2.5 million the county is setting aside for to aid cleanup work in municipalities and future projects to address problem areas, like constructing detention ponds, stabilizing streams and building culverts.

In addition, the county is providing $250,000 for distribution to individuals recovering from flooding damage. This money is being channeled through the Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties.

Picente said Wednesday he hopes to hear back from the state by the end of the week.

“I’m confident they’re going to match it,” he said.

​In describing what occurred July 1, the county executive said some municipalities “had water like they need had before.”

Also on Wednesday, the Board of Legislators passed four resolutions regarding the county’s latest flood mitigation efforts. Picente had announced late week his plan to allocate $2.75 million for recovery efforts and flood mitigation projects.

“There’s nothing worse than this,” said Legislator James M. D’Onofrio, R-15, New Hartford, said the of the flooding that hit homes nearly two weeks ago. “Let’s at least offer some help.”

A breakdown of the county money shows: $2 million for flood mitigation projects, plus a local share; $500,000 for cleanup efforts by municipalities, also with a local share; and $250,000 for individuals.

The money is coming from the county’s reserves.

Majority Leader George E. Joseph, R-10, Westmoreland, said during the GOP legislative caucus the county’s investment might be tripled when the local shares and possible state money are added in.

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