$ 1.75 million in state aid to help victims of the July 12 floods

State Senator Tommy Tomlinson speaking Wednesday.
Credit: Tom Sofield / LevittownNow.com

Just over two months after the July 12 flash flood that damaged hundreds of homes across the country, a bipartisan group of Lower Bucks County lawmakers announced they had secured $ 1.75 million to help affected residents .

State Senator Tommy Tomlinson, a Republican from the Township of Bensalem, and State Representatives Tina Davis, a Democrat from the Township of Bristol; John Galloway, a Democrat from Bristol Township; and KC Tomlinson, a Republican from the township of Bensalem, announced at a press conference in Bristol Borough who worked to secure state funding. The Bucks County Redevelopment Authority will administer the Neighborhood Flood Assistance Program.

Residents will be able to apply for grants ranging from $ 500 to $ 5,000 to cover flood damage to their homes.

The Money is the first public subsidy program for victims of the July floods. This follows a recent county pledge to fund a $ 2.5 million recovery program through the United Way of Bucks County nonprofit. The county has already set aside $ 1.2 million to help people displaced from their homes.

Although there were low-interest loans available under a federal program for those affected by the storm, the localized area where up to 10 inches of rain fell in just a few hours n was not eligible for federal disaster recovery grants from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. (Federal Emergency Management Agency.)

The severe flooding affected a narrow strip of land in Bensalem Township, Bristol Borough, Bristol Township and part of Philadelphia. This resulted in the displacement of residents and damage to many homes.

GDR President Sean Schafer addressing reporters.
Credit: Tom Sofield / LevittownNow.com

More than 1,100 people have reported damage to homes and businesses in Bensalem Township, Bristol Borough and Bristol Township. County officials said they estimate as many as 400 people have been displaced by the floods.

Bucks County Redevelopment Authority chairman Sean Schafer said the Neighborhood Flood Assistance Program is an important effort to help those affected by the storm.

“I know some people thought we forgot them, but we never forgot them. We have not forgotten these struggling people, ”said Senator Tomlinson.

Tomlinson and other lawmakers said they have heard from those affected and asking for help every day since the flooding. He added that lawmakers and their staff are dedicated to getting help.

State representative Tina Davis.
Credit: Tom Sofield / LevittownNow.com

Davis said some of those affected by the flooding have also been hit hard by COVID-19 and its related issues.

“For the flooding to be just above the event of last year, it was disastrous, she said.

State Representative Tomlinson said the area not meeting the level of damage required for federal disaster grants was not a sufficient response.

“We worked together to secure this essential funding for members of our communities,” she said.

Senator Tomlinson speaks. Credit: Tom Sofield / LevittownNow.com

“We were stuck, but now there is hope,” Bensalem township mayor Joseph DiGirolamo said of the funding.

Craig Bowen, president of Bristol City Council, said the help is needed and will help get people back on track.

Jeff Darwak, executive director of the Redevelopment Authority of Bucks County, said it took time to create a streamlined application process, which can be viewed online. Paper requests can be obtained by contacting the Redevelopment Authority of Bucks County at 215-781-8711 or by sending an email request to [email protected]

Funding will be provided to eligible residents until used. Darwak said priority will be given to those who currently cannot return home.

Those applying for the funds will need to provide documents to show primary residence, proof of property damage and costs incurred as a result of the flooding.

All of the elected officials who spoke had their own story about the July 12 flood. Tomlinson said he was stuck in a restaurant due to the flooding, while Davis’ drive from Harrisburg to his home in the Croydon section of Bristol Township spanned four hours and ended in damage of water at home.

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