Receiving Your Disaster Assistance?

By James Gaddis

July 22, 2010 Updated Jul 19, 2006 at 11:12 PM EDT

The flood destroyed Michael Sharp's house on River Road in Endwell.
It's now gutted and he's ready to be rebuild. But Sharp says he can't afford start until he receives his approved FEMA aid. He says he applied June 30th, and is still waiting for his check in the mail.
"Very important for me to get this aid right now cause if I don't have it, what's going to happen?" said Sharp.
FEMA says nearly 8 thousand 6 hundred people like Sharp have applied for some type of flood aid in the Southern Tier. It says 10 million in aid has already been sent to many of those applicants, and 4 million in aid is still coming.
"Obviously it's not going to be as much as everybody would like to have to rebuild their house to where it was before. But it helps get people by and that's what we're here for," said FEMA's Jennifer Carver.
People can still seek federal and state aid at disaster centers like this one at Owego Apalachin Middle School. The State Emergency Management Services workers there say about 60 people apply here every day. But some in Owego are finding approved aid doesn't come right away. Some flood victims say they can't get state aid until their insurance claims are complete. And for one Owego family, that's making the rebuilding process one big waiting game.
"I'm trying to keep it together cause we got to wait. I'm kind of waiting for insurance. I'd like to really know where we stand," said Kathy Scanlon of Owego.
But Scanlon says all the waiting will be worth it when her new home emerges from what flood waters destroyed.
FEMA and state disaster assistance centers in our area will stay open until further notice. If you need to apply or have questions, you can also call FEMA at 1-800-621-3362 or contact the New York State Assistance Hotline at 1-888-769-7243.

To submit a comment on this article, your email address is required. We respect your privacy and your email will not be visible to others nor will it be added to any email lists.