ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he'll call the state Legislature back to address recent upstate New York flooding if the federal government declines to issue a disaster declaration.
Cuomo issued an emergency declaration a week ago for 15 counties, followed by the request for a federal disaster declaration that would provide money for rebuilding.
He says owners of about 150 homes with significant damage need help, local governments need money for rebuilding roads and culverts and he's pushing for Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster funds.
Failing that, Cuomo says they'll see "how creative" his administration can be providing help, but in "a worst case scenario" he's prepared to call lawmakers back to Albany to deal with it.
He stated: "I'm going to push the White House tomorrow to get the President to declare a disaster area, which would then start those FEMA funds flowing for homeowners and for local government. But on the off-chance that FEMA is not responsive for one reason or another then the State of New York will stand behind that disaster declaration and we'll turn to the state for help and the state will be there. The legislature is not currently in session and we'll see how creative we can be on the stateside but worst case scenario I would be prepared to call a special session to have the legislature come back to deal with this issue if need be, because this is what government is all about."
This year's legislative session ended in June.
Cuomo traveled to Herkimer on Sunday to thank first responders and emergency workers for their efforts following the devastating flooding.