Maloney Has Worked for Years to Ensure Unused HUD Disaster Relief Funds Stay in Orange County
WASHINGTON – (RealEstateRama) — Three years after he stood at Maple Avenue Park to announce that $11.5 million worth of unused Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Development Block Grant Disaster Relief (CDBG-DR) funding would remain available to Orange County for flood mitigation in the wake of Hurricane Irene, Representative Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18) announced two flood mitigation projects totaling $2.8 million. The first project will focus on a retention pond near Maple Avenue Park, and the other will repair and stabilize a portion of the Monhagen Drainageway between West Main Street and California Avenue, both in the City of Middletown.
“Families and businesses in Middletown have lost their land and have had to worry about the effects of flash flooding and storms for years, but that’s about to change,” said Rep. Maloney. “These projects will shore up some of the eroding land and protect our people from mother nature while creating good-paying jobs and spurring the local economy.”
“I am proud of the work conducted by the County’s Community Development Office with the support of Congressman Maloney and State Senator John Bonacic,” said Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus. “Their support was critical in obtaining these funds, which will allow the City of Middletown to rebuild important infrastructure components that were devastated by the impacts of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee more than six years ago.”
“We’re going to get these high-risk flood areas fixed up so people don’t have to worry about damage to their property or their ability to get around during a serious storm or a hurricane,” said Middletown Mayor Joe DeStefano. “This was a team effort and it’s going to benefit a lot of people in the City of Middletown. I want to thank Congressman Maloney for working with us on this for so many years.”
The Maple Avenue Drainage Improvements project will focus on minimizing the potential flash flooding along Maple Avenue. It will include the creation of a storm water detention area upstream of the pond at Maple Avenue Park. The project will also include the construction of over 850 feet of storm sewer. Many Middletown residents lost portions of their backyards as the result of erosion and flooding, but this project will restore some of this land. This project is estimated to cost $1.6 million.
The West Main Street Drainage Improvements project aims to restore more property lost to erosion and minimize potential future erosion during moderate intensity storms. Much of the existing drainageway will be rebuilt, and the remaining portion will be stabilized. Finally, chain link fencing will be installed around the channel for safety purposes. This project is estimated to cost $1.2 million.
In 2014, as the City was still rebuilding after Hurricane Irene, Rep. Maloney announced that he had secured $11.5 Million in unused CDBG-DR funding that would have otherwise been returned to the federal government. Rep. Maloney worked with Orange County to align the projects with the requirements of HUD. In doing so, Rep. Maloney and Rich Mayfield, Orange County’s Director of Community Development, collaborated for several years to ensure that these funds remain available for folks in the Hudson Valley. As a result of these efforts, the funding originally allocated to Orange County is now being tapped to complete important safety projects, which will also restore land to families and small businesses. These projects are the culmination of years of cooperation between Rep. Maloney, Orange County, and the City of Middletown.
Overall, Orange County has secured nearly $140 million in disaster assistance funding related to this and other natural disasters. Orange County was severely impacted by Hurricane Irene, Tropical Storm Lee and Super Storm Sandy. Days after he was first elected in 2013, Rep. Maloney took to the House Floor to fight to secure critical disaster related funding for folks across the Hudson Valley. Since then, he has worked to ensure that HUD sticks to its promise to award these funds across the region.