SCHOHARIE COUNTY – Disaster survivors can now pick up water and ready-to-eat meals at five Point of Distribution (POD) locations in Schoharie County. The PODs are being operated by local and New York State officials with resource assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and volunteer relief groups.
Also, one Red Cross shelter is now open to serve survivors.
The PODs are located in the villages of Schoharie, Middleburgh, Blenheim, Gallupville and Esperance. Most are set up as drive-through operations in order to speed up the distribution process, but it is not absolutely necessary to arrive by car. The PODs will operate between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m., seven days a week, until the needs of disaster survivors are met.
In Blenheim and Gallupville, drive-through PODs are located at the local fire stations. In Schoharie, a drive-through POD is set up at the County Building on the corner of Main and Spring streets. In Middleburgh a drive-through POD is located at the Middleburgh Elementary School. A fifth “pull up” POD is located at the Esperance Elks Lodge, 3979 Hwy Route 20.
Disaster survivors may also receive cleaning supplies donated by the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army. A limited supply of brooms, mops, buckets, gloves and liquid cleaning agents is available at the POD locations.
The American Red Cross is now operating an emergency shelter in the county to provide overnight accommodations for storm survivors whose homes were rendered uninhabitable or inaccessible from the storm. The shelter is located in Cobleskill at the Golding Middle School, 193 Golding Drive.
At the request of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, President Obama declared a federal disaster in New York State on Aug. 31 to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the areas affected by Hurricane Irene beginning on August 26, 2011.
The President's action makes federal funding available to affected individuals in Albany, Clinton, Delaware, Dutchess, Essex, Greene, Montgomery, Nassau, Orange, Ostego, Rensselaer, Rockland, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Suffolk, Sullivan, Ulster, Warren and Westchester counties. Individual assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured or underinsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster.
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.