President Trump approves Lake Ontario disaster declaration
Press Release, Congressman Chris Collins
WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) commended the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for approving the disaster declaration for flooding along the Lake Ontario shoreline.
This flooding has been attributable to the failed Plan 2014 that leaves the south shore of Lake Ontario in danger of historic erosion, Collins said. The congressman has been working closely with the Trump Administration to make sure this declaration was a priority amongst requests for other devastating disasters across the country.
“We have witnessed awful devastation along the shoreline and have stayed persistent in our fight to secure federal assistance,” said Collins. “My constituents desperately need this support and I thank the Trump Administration for its commitment to Western New York.”
Federal funding is available to the State and to tribal and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged by the flooding in the counties of Jefferson, Niagara, Orleans, Oswego, St. Lawrence and Wayne. Federal funding is also available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures statewide.
“Today’s news means that those impacted will have access to the wide-ranging disaster assistance FEMA can provide, but we will continue working with the Administration to make sure new IJC commissioners will be appointed to put an end to Plan 2014,” added Collins.
Collins has met with both President Trump and Vice President Pence, sharing his concerns about Lake Ontario’s shoreline flooding, the IJC and Plan 2014. Staff from the Collins office and the White House have been working closely since the request for a disaster declaration was issued to make sure this funding was secured. Monroe County remains under review and Collins will continue to work toward a resolution. Collins has received support from state and local leaders in highlighting these needs.
“We are very pleased with the FEMA declaration being made. Hopefully, this will be the last time we need a declaration for these reasons,” said E. John DeFilipps, Chairman of Orleans County Legislature.
“This is great news for Niagara County and its lakeshore residents that have sustained serious property damage along our shoreline,” said William Keith McNall, Chairman of Niagara County Legislature. “Niagara County sincerely thanks Congressman Collins for his several trips to view lakeshore conditions and property damage through the last several months. Niagara County recognizes and appreciates Congressman Collins’ persistent and unending efforts in trying to attain this funding that is so important to lakefront communities, for which Niagara County is very grateful.”
“I know I speak for lake-shore residents, small businesses, and local governments when I thank Congressman Collins for his hard work to ensure New York gets the federal resources it desperately needs for flood recovery. As lake levels recede, we’re still fully assessing the damage. FEMA aid will be a critical step as we help devastated home and business owners and as we rebuild our communities,” said State Senator Robert Ortt.
“FEMA’s decision today is a monumental step for our communities who have been living with the damage done by Lake Ontario’s flooding since last winter. While the damage was certainly unparalleled, this funding will undoubtedly help NY State continue helping those in need. I commend FEMA for its decision and I thank Congressman Collins for all of his hard work during this time and in making this funding a reality,” said Assemblyman Steve Hawley.
“FEMA’s approval of the disaster declaration for flooding is very welcome news to the residents and businesses that have endured the devastation of the extreme high water levels of Lake Ontario’s south shores. I applaud President Trump for his action and Congressman Chris Collins for his tireless advocacy on behalf of these communities. I will continue to work hard fighting for the necessary funding and resources to make our shoreline communities whole,” said Assemblyman Mike Norris.
“Congressman Collins has led our NORA (Niagara Orleans Regional Alliance) fight from day one for our Lakeshores, to Washington, and back through Albany. These monies are desperately needed to offset the horrendous expense incurred by this man-made disaster created by the IJC. We thank you Congressman Collins.” said David E. Godfrey, Niagara County Legislator and Lynne M. Johnson, Orleans County Legislator in a joint statement.