MARGARETVILLE, Sept. 13, 2011 – Businesses in the Catskill-Delaware Watershed that sustained structural damage to their buildings as a result of flooding from Tropical Storms Irene and Lee may receive assistance from a new program approved by the Board of Directors of the Catskill Watershed Corporation September 13.
Meeting in special session, the Board authorized the 2011 Flood Recovery Grant Program to help for-profit enterprises get back on their feet, using money from the Catskill Fund for the Future (CFF), the CWC’s economic development fund.
The Board also approved establishment of a separate recovery fund using money that can be donated by outside entities. The rules for this fund have not yet been finalized, but grants would be available for both businesses and non-profit organizations and institutions. For information on how to contribute to this fund, please contact Executive Director Alan Rosa at 845-586-1400.
“We want to help stores, shops, salons, mills and other small businesses that are the heart of the Catskills’ economy to get back in business as soon as possible,” Rosa said. “Functioning businesses will allow our communities to recover from this disaster, and will help us resume life as we know it and love it in this beautiful region.”
Said Congressman Chris Gibson (NY-20), “I strongly applaud the CWC for providing Watershed businesses with these vital flood relief grants. The value of these grants to my district simply cannot be overstated. It will take all of our best efforts to repair and rebuild, and this funding will be so critical to helping our communities and neighbors recover. Furthermore, setting up a fund to collect charitable monetary donations will ensure anyone who wants to be a part of Watershed-wide recovery efforts has a trusted way to do so.”
The new, $5 million CFF program will provide a maximum of $30,000 to businesses for labor and materials needed to repair walls, floors, foundations, windows and fixed improvements damaged in the storms of August 28 and September 9. The business portions of home-based companies are eligible for repair grants, but residences are not. Inventory losses, income loss, or expenses covered by insurance or other grants are not reimbursable. Non-profits, mobile home park operators or apartment building owners are not eligible for assistance, nor are multi-state franchises or chain stores.
The program allocates funds for each of the five counties in the Catskill-Delaware New York City Watershed, based on the percentage of Watershed land in each county. Delaware will receive up to $2,573,000, Greene $931,500, Schoharie $220,500, Sullivan $245,000 and Ulster $1,029,500. The Supervisors of Watershed Towns in each county will decide how to divide their county’s allocation among affected municipalities, and it will be the Supervisors of those municipalities who will provide CWC with a list of businesses needing reconstruction help.
CWC staff will contact affected businesses, determine eligibility, and complete paper work, coordinating with flood insurance, participating agencies and other charities. The respective town boards must approve each grant and disbursement request.
Businesses will also have the option of applying for low-interest loans through the Catskill Fund for the Future.
The CWC is a non-profit, Local Development Corporation responsible for several environmental protection, economic development and education programs in the New York City Watershed West of the Hudson River.
For more information, go to www.cwconline.org, or call toll-free 877-928-7433; or 845-586-1400.