Hurricane Irene

Pat Bradley/WAMC

This week the nation is recognizing the tenth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.  But this week also marks the anniversary of another mega-storm that tracked across our region four years ago today. 

NASA/Public Domain

     Hurricanes are rare here in the Northeast, and forecasters say this year’s Atlantic hurricane season will be relatively inactive.  But emergency preparedness officials are urging people not to become complacent when it comes to hurricanes.   WAMC”s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Peter Judge, the spokesman for the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

It has been over 40 months since tropical storm Irene flooded the Schoharie County Public Safety Building and the jail; both are still in need of repair. Upstate New York Congressman Chris Gibson led a gathering of state and local leaders Tuesday in Schoharie County, with the intent to spark FEMA to make a decision. 

NYCDEP / flickr

There's reason to celebrate today in Schoharie County. The Gilboa Dam Rehabilitation Project has come to an end...

The $138 million dam reconstruction – believed to be the largest public works project in the Catskills – was completed two years ahead of schedule.

Orange County Receives HUD Funding For Storm Recovery

Aug 29, 2014
Courtesy of the Office of Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney

Three years after Hurricane Irene hit the Hudson Valley, a New York Congressman and other elected officials announced more funding for Orange County for recovery efforts.

Elected officials stood in Middletown Thursday to announce $11.5 million in additional Housing and Urban Development Community Development Block Grant Disaster Relief funding for Orange County. Democratic Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney says he pushed through a lot of bureaucratic red tape to secure federal investment, and worked with HUD to reallocate funds to fulfill unmet Hurricane Irene recovery needs.

Reconstruction To Begin On A Hurricane-Damaged Bridge

Aug 21, 2014
WAMC, Allison Dunne

Elected officials gathered in Orange County this morning to announce the start of reconstruction of a bridge damaged by Hurricane Irene in August 2011. They say the lengthy process of securing funding to get construction off the ground needs to be streamlined.

Three years after Hurricane Irene hit the Hudson Valley and destroyed the Forge Hill Bridge over Moodna Creek in New Windsor, elected officials stood in front of the site, announcing that bridge construction begins next week. Here’s Republican state Senator Bill Larkin.

wikipedia commons

A task force that has been looking at ways to prevent flooding in a Greene County village will present its recommendations at a public meeting tonight.

wikipedia commons

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo gathered local leaders from around the state Wednesday in Albany to talk about reaction to past storms, and to plan for the next ones.

wikipedia.org

Massachusetts’ highest court has heard arguments from three major utilities seeking to overturn record penalties stemming from their response to two major storms in 2011.

WAMC photocomposite by Dave Lucas

Homeowners from Greene county down through the Catskills and Hudson Valley hit by flooding have two weeks left to apply for financial assistance from the state.

To date, the NY Rising Housing Recovery Program has paid more than $280 million to 6,388 homeowners for damages that resulted from Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Irene, or Tropical Storm Lee. The program funds repair, mortgage assistance, flood mitigation and buyouts of damaged homes.

Officials say every eligible homeowner who applied by January 20th has been issued a check for home reconstruction.

Penelope Queen

Climate change has claimed the Kaaterskill Creek as one of its victims. The deep impact from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee continue to affect the creek and nearby residents.

WAMC’S Morning Edition Anchor David Guistina speaks with Noel Liberty, Founder of the Music Studio and a member of the New York State Music Teachers Association , Sarah Goodrich, Executive Director of Schoharie Area Long Term, Inc. (SALT), and Abby Bemis, a 15-yr old Music Studio pianist and volunteer at SALT about the Music Marathon Fundraiser tomorrow for those still effected by Hurricane Irene.

WHERE: Colonie Center Mall, Colonie, New York.

WHEN: Saturday, November 2, 2013 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.

NWS

One year ago, New Yorkers were bracing for Superstorm Sandy - today, state government officials are gathered in Albany to compare notes on the response and brainstorm about plans to respond to future crises and calamities.

Many struggle to recover one year after Superstorm Sandy.  Republican New York State Assemblyman Pete Lopez says many of his constituents are still reeling from the one-two punch of Irene and Lee - along with others in his district impacted by Sandy.

WAMC Composite Photo by Dave Lucas

Officials in Windham concede telecommunication capabilities in the community are NOT likely to improve in the immediate future... 

Recovery has been a slow process in the wake of Hurricane Irene, which devastated the Greene County town a few years ago. 

Spotty cellular phone service has been an ongoing problem; officials say plans to build a network of cell towers is in the works, but will take years to unfold at a cost of millions.

Assemblyman Pete Lopez is looking for an alternative solution that could be fast-tracked.

WAMC/Allison Dunne

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was in the Hudson Valley this afternoon, his second stop of the day in communities that qualify for funding for recovery and rebuilding from Hurricane Sandy, Tropical Storm Lee, and Hurricane Irene under a new state program.

Governor Cuomo visited Stony Point, hit hard by storms before and after the bruising Hurricane Sandy last October. He says it is inarguable that we are living amid a new weather pattern.

FEMA

Two years after Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee and almost one year after Superstorm Sandy altered New York’s land and seascapes, relief aid --- from both private donors and government agencies --- has been painfully slow in coming, as communities struggle to return to normal.

Tim Engleman, flickr

Two New York congressional representatives have announced a grant that will help an acclaimed culinary institute in the Hudson Valley develop a training and workforce development center.

Jasleen Kaur, flickr

In 2011, Hurricane Irene severely damaged a family health facility in a rural area of Ulster County. Nearly two years later, the health center has been rebuilt.

When the doctors at Maverick Family Health of Woodstock opened a new clinic - Maverick West - on Route 28 in Boiceville in February 2011, they did so as part of a mission to make quality medical care available to all reaches of rural Ulster County. Maverick Family Health Center co-director Dr. Randy Rissman says Hurricane Irene had other plans.  

public-domain-image.com

NEWBURGH – There are 400 dams in New York State that are classified as high-hazard and 100 of them are in Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney’s 18th District in Putnam, Westchester, Orange and Dutchess counties.

The freshman Democrat announced on Wednesday that he would introduce legislation next week to provide a new national dam safety program; the previous one expired in 2011.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

New York City Department of Environmental Protection officials opened the Gilboa Dam site to government leaders, the media and the public Tuesday to get a firsthand look at reconstruction.

NY Governor Submits Plan for Federal Sandy Aid

Mar 13, 2013
LouisvilleUSACE, flickr

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has a plan to allocate $1.7 billion in federal aid for disaster-recovery programs. The aid is intended for New Yorkers devastated by Superstorm Sandy, Hurricane Irene, and Tropical Storm Lee. 

Young's General Store, Prattsville NY

Most Catskill Mountain communities have recovered from the damage wrought by twin storms Irene and Lee nearly two years ago. Things are not quite back to normal for hard-hit Prattsville —  the town that, for a time, became a poster child for hurricane destruction in New York.

Ryan Delaney/WAMC

The federal government is going to contribute $950,000 as part of a plan to build 27 units of affordable housing in a Vermont state office building in Waterbury made unusable by flooding from Tropical Storm Irene.

Governor Peter Shumlin and U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy on Friday announced the grant for the $6 million project on the building that fronts on Main Street.

Flickr / Doug Kerr

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — With New York officials now proposing to spend $400 million to buy and demolish downstate homes damaged by October's Superstorm Sandy, they say 646 buyout applications have been federally approved for $55 million in a buyout program for upstate properties damaged in 2011 by the back-to-back storms Irene and Lee.

NOAA

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A Connecticut task force recommends that local zoning laws reflect changes in rising sea levels and new flood elevations after two storms devastated the state's shoreline.

The legislative report released Monday recommends that municipalities and the state consider the impact of rising sea levels when deciding whether to build or issuing public health permits for sewage disposal.

The group was formed in February 2012, after Hurricane Irene hit Connecticut as a tropical storm and eight months before more damage was caused by Superstorm Sandy.

The state of Vermont is getting a $1.8 million federal grant to help businesses, farms, towns and nonprofit groups use online resources to help respond to disasters such as the flooding from Tropical Storm Irene.

Courtesy NOAA

Vermont's continuing effort to recover from Tropical Storm Irene is the focus of a conference  at Norwich University today.  
    
Vermont Irene Recovery Officer Sue Minter says the Irene and Beyond Summit will not only discuss continuing needs due to Irene damage, but also begin to shape a statewide response system for future disasters.

USFWS

NORTHFIELD, Vt. (AP) — People involved in Vermont's continuing effort to recover from Tropical Storm Irene are set to gather at Norwich University in Northfield to assess how far they've come and the future of those efforts.

State energy regulators have fined three Massachusetts utilities nearly $25 million for their response to two major storms in 2011.

The penalties were announced Tuesday by the Department of Public Utilities after a yearlong investigation.

Some customers were without power for a week after Tropical Storm Irene in August 2011 and a surprise October snowstorm.

Spencer Ainsley / AP

Seven residents of the Town of Goshen and 14 residents of the Town of Chester have filed verified complaints in State Supreme Court alleging their properties were flooded during Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee in August of last year because of their inaction.

The Goshen residents, who all live in the New Hampton area, have filed against the town, Orange County and the State Department of Environmental Conservation claiming they did not clear tree growth and other obstructions from the Wallkill River, which resulted in the flooding of their homes.

Pages