Some much needed FEMA funds finally arrived for one Southern Tier waste water treatment plant. The aid will help with the costs of repairs. Our Elyse Mickalonis says you may be surprised about which natural disaster this money is supposed to cover.
BROOME COUNTY, N.Y. – It’s money that one Southern Tier sewage treatment plant has needed for more than six years now.
"Four point three million in FEMA money from the 2006 flood,” said Catherine Aingworth, JSTP Superintendent. “We're thrilled to receive that after all this time. It’s taken a lot of time and effort trying to recover that money.”
It’s taken so long that some of those funds could be used for 2011 flood repairs.
“If anyone’s dealt with FEMA, they understand that sometimes you end up submitting paperwork two or three times, because it gets lost, they change agents and a lot of municipalities are dealing with that again with the 2011 flood,” said Village Trustee Bruce King.
Monday night, lawmakers met to discuss where to apply the funds. Despite waiting years for the aid, plant employees have been working hard to get things back on track.
"It took quite a bit of effort to clean up the factory and make it habitable for workers. A lot of our equipment is down below ground level, so we had to clean up and disinfect those areas,” said Aingworth.
The plant hasn’t been fully operational since floodwaters ruined electrical equipment and more.
"We actually have only been able to do primary treatment,” said Aingworth. “Typically, we have primary treatment which removed solids and secondary which removes dissolved contaminants from the water and right now we’re not doing much of that."
Not only do plant owners want to get back up and running, they want to protect the plant for years to come.