Governor Hochul Flooding Fund
July 18, 2023

Governor Hochul Announces $3 Million In Recovery Funds Available To Orange County Homeowners

Governor Hochul Announces $3 Million In Recovery Funds Available To Orange County Homeowners
After Historic Flooding, Governor Announces Eligible Homeowners Can Receive Up To $50,000 For Critical Repairs
Governor Applied for FEMA Major Disaster Declaration Following More Than $50 Million In Damages

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced up to $3 million in funding will be made available to eligible homeowners in Orange County impacted by flooding from recent historic rainfall. These State funds will provide emergency repair grants of up to $50,000 for critical home repairs to homeowners who suffered damage to their primary residence during last week's 1,000-year flooding event.

"In the wake of the historic disaster that hit Orange County, I'm committed to supporting this community every step of the way," Governor Hochul said. "State personnel has been working around the clock to help Orange County rebuild and recover, from repairing roads and bridges to assisting homeowners with this initiative. Make no mistake: these extreme weather events are our new normal, and New York will always be ready for what comes our way."

The emergency grant funds announced today will cover damage incurred at a primary residence for homeowners who meet the program's income guidelines. New York State Homes and Community Renewal will oversee the program which will be administered by Rural Development Advisory Corporation, an Orange County-based non-profit organization and subsidiary of RUPCO Inc.

Homeowners can apply to receive funding to cover the cost of urgent repairs necessary to bring their home into a safe and habitable condition. Eligible work may include repair or replacement of electrical and plumbing systems, heating systems and appliances, flooring, drywall, insulation, windows, doors, siding, and roofing. A full list of qualified repairs will be available on the RUPCO website.

Grants of up to $50,000 will be awarded based on a scope of work approved by RDAC. Applicants must be homeowners whose primary residence is Orange County and have incomes at or below 80 percent of the Area Median Income.

Eligible homeowners can apply for funding at www.rupco.org or call (845) 713-4568 ext. 114 for more information.

During the flooding, the New York State Division of Homeland and Security Services (DHSES) activated the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) and the Fire Operations Center (FOC). DHSES had field staff embedded with Orange County's Emergency Operations Center and Ontario County's Emergency Operations Center. The State deployed a total of five swift water rescue teams composed of State Fire, State Police and State Parks personnel, as well as high-axle vehicles to the Mid-Hudson and Finger Lakes regions. In the aftermath of the flooding, the Governor requested a Major Disaster Declaration from the federal government. DHSES continues to work with county leaders to conduct necessary damage assessments and documentation to secure additional federal assistance. The Department of Financial services also sent staff to Orange and Rockland counties to provide insurance assistance to residents impacted by the recent flooding.

New York State Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, "New York State is lucky to have a leader like Governor Hochul who understands the fight against climate change requires long-term strategies as well as the ability to take immediate action when communities are battered by Mother Nature. The funding announced today will play an important role in ensuring homeowners in Orange County have the resources they need to rebuild their lives. We thank Rural Development Advisory Corp. for their continued partnership and for standing ready to assist families hard-hit by these unprecedented weather events."

State Senator James Skoufis said, "Last week's flooding and devastation were among the worst eastern Orange County has seen, and the volunteer manpower and donated resources flowing into our communities have been incredibly heartening, but we know more is needed to address the extreme loss of personal property many have experienced. I applaud the Governor's effort to get emergency funding into the hands of local homeowners who need it most, and I implore FEMA to recognize the volume of loss our communities have faced and assign a Major Disaster Declaration immediately."

Assemblymember Chris Eachus said, "This once-in-a-thousand year storm has wrought immense damage to the communities in my district. It is important now more than ever that we work together as a state to assist those with the greatest needs, financially, physically, and emotionally. I am grateful to Governor Hochul for the release of this critical funding that will make an immense impact in our relief efforts, and directly help my constituents rebuild their lives stronger than before."

Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus said, "This funding will be very beneficial for impacted families in Orange County. I appreciate Governor Hochul being on the ground here with us and allocating this important assistance. We will continue to urge the Federal government to provide needed funding to fully re-build stronger."

Orange County Rural Development Advisory Corporation Executive Director Faith Moore said, "We are immensely grateful to Governor Hochul and New York State Homes and Community Renewal for their generous contribution of $3 million. This funding will enable us to support homeowners affected by the devastating recent flooding. We are eager to help individuals and families rebuild their lives and communities, and this grant will significantly impact achieving that goal. The teams at RDAC and RUPCO are actively collaborating with local authorities, community partners, and stakeholders to identify eligible homeowners and initiate the grant application process."

RUPCO Inc. Chief Executive Officer Kevin O'Connor, said, "We are pleased to be able to help the State of New York respond to the horrific damage caused by the recent flooding in parts of Orange County. Our affiliate RDAC can be on the ground with the affected homeowners, experienced in home repairs and administering disaster relief funding. Time is of the essence, and we intend to quickly deliver these funds to help people restore their homes and resume life stability."