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January 24, 2014

Sidney public meeting to discuss flood funding

By Mark Boshnack Staff Writer
The Daily Star

---- — Sidney residents affected by flooding starting in 2006 can learn more about their options at an upcoming public meeting, officials said Tuesday.

The meeting will take place at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Sidney Fire House on River Street.

“We want people to know their options,” on which state and federal funds are available, said John Redente, co-chairman of the village’s New York Rising Reconstruction Program Committee. The state program provides as much as $3 million to help the village recover from floods that hit in 2006 and 2012.

State and federal funds should be available in the village to elevate 13 houses above the flood plain, and buy out 21 other properties, Redente said. In addition, about 40 homes could be relocated.

To help with that process, the village is seeking to buy a farm on Plankenhorn Road, which is outside the municipality, for $1.2 million, with the New York Rising funds. Redente said the village is waiting for a letter of commitment for the state funds before it can proceed with that plan, which is part of the village’s long-range plan to revitalize its tax base, he said.

The village is seeking additional funding to build infrastructure and relocate homes as part of that plan, Sidney Mayor Andrew Matviak said. The area hit by flooding includes about 240 homes. Besides the housing options, the meeting will be a chance for the public to discuss related issues, Redente said. This includes other grants the village recently received.

This includes two awards in December from the state Regional Economic Development Council, Matviak said. It received $655,000 for downtown infrastructure improvements and an additional $25,000 to study other revitalization efforts in that area.