Flooding Victims Hoping for More Help

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NICHOLSON, Pa. -- More than three months after severe flooding hit our area, the president has approved disaster relief for 10 Pennsylvania counties.

It was August when severe storms led to major flooding across the state, leaving some homes and businesses damaged and some destroyed.

Roadways were under water.

Now comes a federal disaster declaration for 10 counties: Bradford, Columbia, Lackawanna, Lycoming, Montour, Schuylkill, Sullivan, Susquehanna, Tioga, and Wyoming.

That declaration means local governments can get federal money to pay for facility repairs or improvements, even overtime costs related to the flood damage.

In Nicholson in Wyoming County, the mayor calls it good news. This area was slammed by flooding when three creeks overflowed.

This disaster declaration is for public assistance meaning it won't go to help individuals, just municipal costs.

The August storms flooded Belvedere Lanes in Nicholson, causing tens of thousands of dollars in damage.

Brand new bowling lanes were destroyed, and the owner has no plans to open again as a bowling alley, instead, turning this into an entertainment center with machines he can carry out when floodwaters rise.

"I get my head literally above water and then boof! There's another flood. I've done it three times. Unfortunately, I can't do it anymore. I just can't do it," Allen Loch said.

Loch was hoping the federal government would step in to help small business and property owners like himself recover from the flooding.

"Where's the money go? Just like everything else, where does it go?" he asked.

Matt Starzer owns a home near Martins Creek in Nicholson. His place was flooded like many others in his neighborhood. He lost a furnace, hot water heater, and electrical box and he's still trying to make all the repairs.

"The insurance obviously isn't going to cover a 1980s furnace to replace it with something in 2017, 2018 so that's a lot of out-of-pocket expense involved with that," Starzer said.

Emergency officials say that Governor Tom Wolf has put in a request to the federal government for individual federal assistance, that is, money for families and individuals affected by the flooding. That request is still under review.

"What's the government doing for us at this point? Nothing," Loch said.

Emergency officials say there is no telling how, if, or when the president will grant the request for individual federal help.

1 Comment

  • darkhorse6669

    He probably only helped because theyre Republican counties. He doesn’t see anyone else as a real person.

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