SILVER CREEK - Sometimes a letter is all it takes to get the ball rolling. This was the case for the village of Silver Creek in securing some of the Federal Emergency Management Agency funding for projects after the 2009 flood.
At the last village board meeting, Trustee Nick Piccolo announced sending a letter to state and federal officials on behalf of the village seeking FEMA funds. He reported having responses from State Senator Catharine Young, Congressman Tom Reed, and senators Kristen Gillibrand and Charles Schumer.
At Monday's board meeting, Piccolo reported having met with New York State Emergency Management Office Public Assistance Chief Christopher Holmes on Friday.
OBSERVER Photo by Nicole Gugino
The Silver Creek Board received good news that it will receive some of its FEMA funding. Pictured from left is Mayor Kurt Lindstrom, Attorney Dan Gard, Trustee Amy Romanik and Trustee Nick Piccolo.
"Finally we got some good news. We had a meeting here with FEMA and SEMO and they were able to let us know that two of the projects from the flood have been approved and they are on their way to Governor Cuomo's desk to be signed and once they are signed they will be returned to FEMA and money will be released," he explained.
The two projects approved by FEMA include flooding mitigation of the fire hall and replacement of public works equipment for a total of $276,000 after the village's percentage is subtracted. He said it could take four to six weeks to receive this funding.
However, the much larger project of the department of public works building is still under consideration.
"To continue on with project 952, which is the DPW building, they said that could take up to four to six months before it is processed and sent to the governor for approval. So we did make some headway and we are going to end up with some funding that is going to come back from the flooding," he said.
Piccolo added after the meeting with Holmes, he believes FEMA has a better understanding of the village's choice for a DPW.
"We went over a lot of the key issues that played a role in purchasing that at the time and the reason for it and now FEMA has a better understanding of why that was opted for at the time and hopefully it's going to help us," he said.
Piccolo thanked the state and federal officials who helped secure these funds for the village and continue to seek the remaining amount.
"I am just so grateful that we have the representatives that represent us in the state as well as our federal representatives. And they do listen and they do reach out when they are asked to help you. I can't say enough about Schumer, Gillibrand and especially Young and Tom Reed. They were great, they put a lot of effort in for all of us and I just can't thank them enough," he said.
The board thanked Piccolo for his efforts.
Piccolo also apologized again for assigning the wrong ownership of the old Moose building. He added he is pursuing someone in the Order of the Moose to take responsibility for the future of the building and hopes to make contact this week.
The next village board meeting will be held March 18 at 7 p.m.