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Storms leave $3 million of damage in wake

Severe damage to the county highway system due to a series of heavy rains and flash flooding has left the county with a bill that now totals more than $3 million after the county was forced to declare a state of emergency on Wednesday, July 23.

And, County Emergency Management Director Bill VanHoesen says he doesn't think Schenectady County's damage total pooled with other counties across the state who also registered damage will meet the federal threshold of $23 million needed to collect federal relief funds.

But, VanHoesen said the county will still attempt to become part of a statewide declaration in search of those funds.

He said his department is already facing difficult financial times where contingency dollars are few and far between.

"This is going to take a whack on the county budget," said VanHoesen.

The county isn't the only budget that might be hurting. Towns along with individual property holders on the western end of the county are also assessing damage and the costs of repairs.

Rotterdam Deputy Supervisor Joe Signore said he knew of at least six homeowners who couldn't even get into their homes at the height of storms on Saturday, July 26, and Sunday, July 27.

Signore said a culvert gave out under Crawford Road, causing severe damage to the shoulder of the road. County crews closed the road on Thursday, July 24, to excavate the old culvert and make repairs.

Signore also said that a major thoroughfare in Rotterdam Junction, Route 5S, was temporarily washed out. He said the town is still assessing the flood's financial ramifications.

In Duanesburg, Supervisor Rene Merrihew said six or seven town roads washed out and were in need of major repairs. She cited severe damage to the village of Delanson's well " a major source of water for the village " as most critical.

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