REDI Funding Faces Possible Hold-Up from State Due to Unmatched Funds During COVID Crisis

A letter from local representatives to the Governor:

Dear Governor Cuomo: 

As you have correctly pointed out numerous times during your daily press conferences, local governments across New York State have seen their budgets devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is from this perspective that we write you today. 

Several Niagara County localities were fortunate to receive funding through the New York State Lake Ontario Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative (REDI) for projects that will help us battle what seems to have become an annual problem of high water levels on Lake Ontario. As you know, under REDI, the state covers 95 percent of project costs with the locality responsible for the remaining 5 percent. 

Local governments were already having difficulty identifying the 5 percent match BEFORE the pandemic; now it has become virtually impossible. Much like your request to the federal government to waive the 25 percent match FEMA requires of the state for federal disaster funds, we are asking you to do the same for us with REDI funds – waive the local match. 

Below is a list of the projects in Niagara County. The 5 percent share for these 11 projects totals only $1.6 million, not a lot of money to the state, but an insurmountable hurdle locally. 

Governor, the lakeshore communities in Niagara County need to get these projects done. It would be a shame if these projects lag because of the 5 percent match. Again, please consider waiving the local match requirement. Thank you for your consideration. 

Sincerely, 

Becky Wydysh John Syracuse Chairman Vice Chairman Niagara County Legislature Niagara County Legislature 

Dave Godfrey Irene Myers 10th District Legislator 1st District Legislator 

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