Monday, October 31, 2011

Irene / Lee / snowstorm

Good afternoon
Here is some important news regarding Irene, Lee and this weekend's snowstorm:
The deadline for the application period for Public Assistance (municipalities and PNPs) for BOTH Irene and Lee has been extended to November 28th (this is the date the Requests for Public Assistance must be filed, not necessarily the full reimbursement package).
The deadline for the application period for Individual Assistance (families, businesses) for BOTH Irene and Lee has been extended to December 15th. You may file via telephone at 1-800-621-3362 or internet at The Disaster Recovery Center in Kingston closes at 8 PM today.
NYS Electric and Gas has restored power to all of its customers in Ulster County. Central Hudson has restored service to all but 7,123 customers in Ulster County. They expect 95% restoration by 11 PM November 2. The warnings continue regarding down wires - treat them as potentially energized. This is especially critical tonight as trick or treaters go door to door.
The Red Cross shelter at SUNY New Paltz remains open. Anyone taking advantage of it should bring their own pillow, blanket and toiletries.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Storm update

Good morning
Snowfall totals vary greatly; some of the highest totals are in southeast Ulster (Marlboro, Lloyd, New Paltz, etc).
Here is a brief look at power outages:
NYSEG - 5,343 customers in Ulster County, 2,197 are out of power
CHG&E - 87,947 customers in Ulster County, 23,692 are out of power
Other general information from Central Hudson
Company wide there are 148,000 customers without power (35,000 in Orange and over 75,000 in Dutchess)
13 transmission lines are down
100 line crews from Tennessee are due in tonight
Today's beautiful weather will allow restoration efforts to move forward at a good pace.
There will be a regional shelter established at SUNY New Paltz in the Health and Wellness Center. This shelter will open at noon today under the leadership of the American Red Cross. Anyone wishing to stay at the shelter should bring their own pillows, blankets and toiletries. As stated previously, we must utilize the regional approach to sheltering.
Dry ice information can be found at the Central Hudson web site.


Saturday, October 29, 2011

Early season snow storm

There is very little change from yesterday's forecast; the Winter Storm Warning remains in effect; downed trees and power lines remain the greatest concern. Here is a re-publish from Friday's message:

Good afternoon
Earthquakes, floods, now an October snowfall. Here is the latest from the
National Weather Service:
A strong storm producing heavy, wet snow coupled with fully leafed trees
will potentially produce extensive power outages.
The storm will carry the liquid equivalent of 2"
This will result in 7+ inches of snow in the greater Kingston area and
over 11 inches in the mountains
The storm may begin as a little light rain tomorrow and transition into
snow during the late afternoon and evening
Snowfall rates up to 1-2" per hour can be expected; it will be heaviest
on Saturday evening
The storm should be out of the area by daybreak on Sunday
Winds are expected to be 10-20 MPH with potential gusts to 30 MPH
The heaviest (in terms of moisture laden snow) will be in the valley

The greatest concern involves the potential for downed trees and power
lines. Remember these safety tips:
Assume all downed power lines to be energized
Never run a generator or charcoal cooking appliance indoors (there is a
great danger of carbon monoxide poisoning)

If sheltering is required regional shelters will be activated in the areas
of greatest damage.

If you need assistance, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Firefighter 1 class in Olive

A Firefighter 1 class will begin December 6, 2011 at 1900 hours at the Olive Co 1 firehouse. Pre-registration is required through the Fire Coordinator's Office.

Friday, October 21, 2011

SBA reaches out to businesses affected by Lee

The US Small Business Administration is seeking businesses affected by Tropical Storm Lee. If your business or non-profit agency suffered physical damages, or is having difficulty meeting operating expenses as a result of the disaster, you may qualify for assistance. Loans of up to $2 million are available. Either visit the Disaster Recovery Center at the Business Resource Center in the Town of Ulster, or call 1-800-659-2955.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Fire training schedule update

Please see the fire training schedule for additional class offerings.

FEMA Registration

Please take special note of the following:
1) There are only 2 weeks left to register for Hurricane Irene assistance. The deadline is October 31, 2011.
2) If you apply for assistance and receive an SBA loan application, fill it out! SBA is the lending vehicle used to issue loans. Even if you think you won't qualify, you must complete the application or THE PROCESS ENDS. If you are turned down for a loan, you may be eligible for a grant. If you don't return the application, there is no recourse.
3) It is necessary to file separate applications for assistance under both Irene AND Lee. Filing for Irene only will not provide you with any benefits you might be eligible for under Lee.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Disaster Unemployment Insurance

The application deadline for Disaster Unemployment Insurance (for those out of work because of Irene / Lee)has been extended to November 14. Please call 1-877-358-5306 to apply. Applicants should have their social security number, past year's earning statement and unemployment history available when you call.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Mobile DRC to return to Ellenvile

The mobile Disaster Recovery Center (to file under FEMA's Individual Assistance program) will be back in Ellenville from 8 AM to 8 PM on October 13-15. Applications may be made for damages incurred during Irene and/or Lee (separate applications are required to seek assistance under each declaration).

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

FEMA disaster assistance information

Good morning
With the Lee declaration comes additional benefits to those who were affected, but also some additional confusion. I would like to emphasize three areas:
1) Even if you applied to FEMA for assistance due to the effects of Irene, you must apply once again to take advantage of additional benefits you may entitled to under Lee.
2) You may apply in person at the Disaster Recovery Center located in the Business Resource Center in Kingston or at one of the mobile sites, on line at, or by phone 1-800-621-3362.
3) It is absolutely essential that applicants complete and return their SBA applications. If you do not return the application (whether you think you won't qualify for a loan, or you think you deserve a grant, not a loan) the process will stop. You must follow through with the SBA application. Denial of that loan will open doors to additional benefits.

FEMA has developed an excellent list of Frequently Asked Questions which are attached below.

Q: Does FEMA charge a fee for a home inspection?
A: No. FEMA never charges for an inspection.

Q: I have applied for disaster assistance before, do I need to apply again?
A: Yes. Even if you applied for assistance for a previous disaster, you must apply again for this disaster.

Q. I already cleaned up and made repairs to my property. Am I still eligible to register with FEMA?
A. Yes. You may be eligible for reimbursement of your clean up and repair expenses.

Q: Will FEMA assistance affect my Social Security check?
A. No. Any aid you receive from FEMA will not affect your monthly Social Security check.

Q: Are disaster relief payments taxable?
A: No. Qualified disaster relief payments are not taxable.

Q: Does my income need to be under a certain dollar amount to qualify for disaster aid?
A: No. FEMA’s Housing Assistance program is available to anyone who suffered damage or loss in the declared counties, regardless of income. Some aid under the Other Needs Assistance program is income dependent and officials make decisions on a case-by-case basis.

Q. Isn’t there a lot of paperwork to register with FEMA?
A. No. There is no paperwork to register with FEMA. You can register with one simple phone call. Call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362. Phone lines are open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET, seven days a week until further notice. People with hearing disabilities can use the TTY number, 800-462-7585. Applicants can also register online at or with any web-enabled mobile device or smartphone at Follow the link to “apply online for federal assistance.”

Q: If I got help from the American Red Cross, can I also get help from FEMA?
A: Yes. FEMA and New York State coordinate a number of programs to help disaster survivors. These programs differ from the emergency food, clothing and shelter provided by the American Red Cross and other voluntary agencies.

Q: When I get help from the American Red Cross, am I automatically registered with FEMA?
A: No. Registering with the American Red Cross or any voluntary agency is not the same as registering with FEMA. If you are a homeowner, renter, or business owner who has damages from Hurricane Irene or Tropical Storm Lee, call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 to register.

Q. I have flood insurance. Should I still register with FEMA?
A. Yes. Everyone with flood insurance should register with FEMA. FEMA may be able to help with uninsured costs.

Q: Do I have to own a business to apply for a loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration?
A: No. The SBA is the primary source of financial assistance following a disaster and provides low-interest loans to homeowners, renters, businesses, and non-profits.

Q: Do I have to be turned down by my bank before I can apply for a disaster loan?
A: No. The SBA has its own criteria for determining each loan applicant’s eligibility.

Q: If I rent an apartment, can I get help to replace my damaged personal property?
A: Yes. A renter may qualify for a FEMA grant or a SBA low-interest disaster loan to replace personal property.

Q: Will FEMA pay for all home repairs or contract work?
A: No. FEMA does not pay to return your home to its condition before the disaster. FEMA provides grants to qualified homeowners to repair damage not covered by insurance but the grants may not pay for all the damage. A SBA loan may return a home to its pre-disaster condition.

Q: Do I have to repay money I receive for disaster relief?
A: No. You do not have to repay grant money but you must repay SBA loans.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Lee declaration and additional location for mobile DRC

Good afternoon
Two important pieces of information
1) Ulster County has been include in Federal Disaster Declaration FEMA-4031-DR-NY (tropical storm Lee). We have been approved for both Individual Assistance (residents and businesses) and Public Assistance (roads and bridges). In theory this will mean that all applicants for both IA and PA will have to begin the process all over again for Lee expenses. We will have to see if there is a "bridge" or streamlined application method established for those who have already applied under Irene.
2) The mobile Disaster Recovery Center will be at the New Paltz Town Hall from 8 AM to 8 PM on October 10-12. Applicants may use this means of applying for aid, go to the DRC at the Business Resource Center in Kingston, apply on line or over the phone. Please help get the word out that the application period for Irene only has a couple of weeks left.