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"Greater Greenburgh" Aims to Reduce Flood Damage

GREENBURGH, N.Y. - The "Greater Greenburgh" hazardous mitigation plan was passed by the town board this week, approving a blueprint aimed at preventing damages caused by flooding and other storm-related problems.

The town board and key developing officials are now keen to apply for federal funding from FEMA to increase the area's safety and lower its loss during future natural disasters. The mitigation plan covers Unincorporated Greenburgh and its six villages, Elmsford, Ardsley, Hastings, Dobbs Ferry, Irvington and Tarrytown.

"It's a major step because, until it's approved, you can't get the federal dollars," said Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner of the unanimously approved plan. "To be honest, I'm not a big believer in studies, but this seems to be the one study that could generate revenue for the town."

While Feiner could not confirm how much the plan will cost, the town is expected to hire a grant firm soon to help make the most effective and efficient decisions.

While the plan concentrates on flooding, said Greenburgh Police Chief Joe DeCarlo, it also covers severe storms, earthquakes, severe winter storms and extreme temperatures.

Since Greenburgh is hit by floods more than any other natural disaster, the funds will partly be used to install levees, basins and drains at high-flooding zones – like where Route 9A hits Warehouse Lane and Tarrytown Road – to alleviate the effects of water buildup. In addition, funds will be appropriated to lift the homes on Old Kensico Road and Babbitt Court, as they are currently on stilts.

Aiding DeCarlo in the plan's conception, development and finalization are Fairview Fire Chief Anthony LoGuidice and Greenburgh Council members Kevin Morgan and Francis Sheehan.

"A lot of people are getting the sense that the town is really serious about addressing the flooding," said Feiner. "And we're taking action steps. It's not rhetoric. We're doing something. Actions speak louder than words. The town board is really focused on this, and I think people realize that there is light at the end of the tunnel."

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