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Local businesses receive state funding for flood repairs

Santa’s Workshop in Wilmington suffered more than $150,000 in damages from Tropical Storm Irene, the family amusement park manager estimated.

Santa’s Workshop in Wilmington suffered more than $150,000 in damages from Tropical Storm Irene, the family amusement park manager estimated. Photo by Jon Hochschartner.

— Non-profits and small businesses throughout the region will receive help from the state of New York in their continuing plight to recover from Tropical Storm Irene.

The office of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced the grants, which were awarded to small businesses and not-for-profits in the North Country through the Business Flood Recovery Grant Program, part of 584 eligible entities that sustained direct, flood-related damage as a result of Tropical Storm Irene or Tropical Storm Lee.

Overall, the entities will receive a total of $7.9 million in assistance through the Business Flood Recovery Grant Program. Empire State Development (ESD), the agency administering the Business Flood Recovery Grant Program, will provide grants of up to $20,000 to the small businesses, farms, multiple dwellings, and not-for-profits that qualified for the program.

“Helping our communities recover from the devastating floods has remained a top priority, and today, we have matched that commitment with critical funding to support their resurgence,” Cuomo said. “This grant program will help those who were hit hardest by the floods get the resources they need to rebuild.”

“As we know, recovery from the devastation is a long and ongoing process,” Sen. Betty Little said. “I’m pleased to join in making this announcement recognizing the need for continued state assistance and the importance of helping employers in our hard-hit communities make progress and recover financially.”

Essex County Board of Supervisors Chairman Randy Douglas said he was pleased to hear the news.

“We are very thankful,” Douglas said. “We have been waiting for a while to hear word on these grants. This is certainly a shot in the arm and I can’t thank the governor enough for that.”

Douglas also gave credit to local officials.

“Carol Calabrese, Jody Olcott (Essex County IDA) and Mike Mascarenas (county community resources director) really did a good job reaching out to the local businesses.

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