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New Bills to Aid Flood Victims

Four bills have been unanimously passed by the New York State Senate that will help with ongoing relief efforts.
Four bills have been unanimously passed by the New York State Senate that will help with ongoing relief efforts.
Annie Krol was one of the many whose basements were flooded by the Sauqouit Creek last summer.
"Flood money is definitely needed because I don't have that many other resources," she said.
She grew up in the home, but says she won't be able to pay taxes on it after repairs cost her around 30 thousand dollars. State aid, she says, only covered a small portion of that.
"So I was dealing with two water tanks and two furnaces because of the flooding," she said.
And she's not alone, which is why the New York State Senate has passed four bills. The first, provided a property tax break. Properties were assessed in March, which was before the summer flooding. One of the new bills allows local governments to reassess homes, and their lower value would lower taxes for homeowners.
"Full property tax that arrives after a flood when you have damaged property that adds insult to injury," said Senator James Seward (R-Oneonta).
On the state level, those whose homes are highly damaged could get a tax rebate equal to the difference of the full value of their home and the diminished post-flood value. The next two bills are geared towards prevention. One would create of a flood mitigation task force to come up with a detailed action plan within six month.
"It would put a system in place where we can be better prepared to address the next storm," said
Senator David Valesky (D-Oneida).
The last bill outlines a program where the state can provide disaster aid when FEMA does not.
Annie has appealed for more state funds but hasn't heard back yet. She says her biggest fear is losing the family home she was entrusted with.
"It would really bother me, letting down my brother on a promise I made," she said.
Those bills will now go before the assembly and then the governor.
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