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SCCC receives $100k grant for Irene expenses

— Schenectady County Community College racked up more than $500,000 in storm-related costs from Tropical Storm Irene, but it’s getting some help in picking up the tab.

College officials on Thursday, Dec. 13, announced National Grid awarded a $100,000 grant to help cover expenses related to repairs following flooding from Irene last year. The funds, secured through assistance from Schenectady Metroplex Development Authority, are from National Grid’s Emergency Commercial District Investment Grant program.

“I want to thank Metroplex and National Grid for their support and assistance with this grant,” Denise Murphy McGraw, chairwoman of the college’s Board of Trustees, said in a statement.

A majority of the college’s expenses came from removing debris and cleanup efforts after floodwater subsided. Electrical repairs totaled more than $150,000, according to McGraw. Metroplex Chairman Ray Gillen said the grant would be used for storm damage repair not covered by federal or state programs.

National Grid Regional Executive William Flaherty said the grant program was established to help affected businesses and organizations rebuild after last year's severe weather.

"The effects of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee were unprecedented for our region,” Flaherty said in a statement. “National Grid and our employees knew that even after the lights were back on and natural gas service was restored, our job was not complete.”

Schenectady County Legislature Chairwoman Judith Dagostino thanked National Grid for providing the grant.

“These funds will go a long way in helping the county and SCCC recover from the fiscal impact of Hurricane Irene,” Dagostino said in a statement. “This grant, along with support from federal and state programs, will help pay for storm related expenses that would otherwise be covered by county taxpayers or our students.”

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