Yonkers residents sign up for benefits as they await FEMA, insurance help after Ida

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YONKERS, N.Y. — As Westchester residents are still recovering from the remnants of Hurricane Ida, officials are trying to get the word out that help is there for everyone from homeowners to renters and business owners.

FEMA has set up a disaster recovery center in Yonkers at the Grinton I. Will Library to connect residents, like Linda Butkowski, with the help they need.

After Ida: Resources from PIX11

“I was in my house and the rain was coming down and I heard rumbling and the ground shaking,” Butkowski said. “My husband and I looked at each other like, ‘What’s going on?’ and we didn’t know but then we went outside and my neighbors next door said, ‘Your wall came down!’”

She didn’t expect to get any damage from the hurricane because she lives on one of the highest points in Yonkers, yet Ida’s force brought her retaining wall down. Each brick on the wall, she said, weighs 100 lbs each.

Because of damage like this, Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said there are different services and agencies readily available.

“There are multiple places that you can get help from the city, from the county, from the state,” Spano said. “If you’re a small business that can’t get FEMA funds, you can get small business loans.”

After Ida: Resources from PIX11

Maria Padron, media specialist with FEMA, said those services offered at the recovery center range from mental health services to the American Red Cross.

“We want to help out and we want everybody who suffered any damages to come here and to recover as soon as possible,” Padron said.

Butkowski doesn’t know if her insurance is covering the damage yet, which she estimates to be at least $6,000, so she’s starting the process now just in case and said it’s convenient that this is available.  

“It’s really great to just come here and get information and not have to stay on a phone for hours waiting,” Butkowski said.

FEMA will be at the library seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.

After Ida: Resources from PIX11

Undocumented individuals with children under the age of 18 who were born in the United States can still register for FEMA, but under their children’s information.

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