The US Small Business Association has declared the flash flooding that affected many parts of Somerville and Cambridge on July 10th a disaster. This declaration allows eligible parties to apply for low interest loans in order to recover from physical damage and economic injury caused by the flooding. Applications for a physical damage loan are due by September 27, 2010, and applications for an economic injury loan are due on April 27, 2011.
A disaster loan outreach center is open at the following location:
Somerville High School (Atrium at the Field House)
81 Highland Avenue
Somerville, MA 02143
It will be open at the following times:
Friday July 30, 2010 from 9:00AM to 5:30PM
Saturday July 31, 2010 from 9:00AM to 1:00PM
Monday August 2 through Thursday August 5, 2010 from 9:00AM to 5:30PM
To learn more about this program, please click here.
Additionally, the Home Improvement Program at Homeowners Rehab have available affordable financing, free construction and project management to repair the flood damaged homes of those who qualify. To learn more about this program, please click here.
Once again, those who have questions or concerns about the flooding earlier this month may call my office at Cambridge City Hall at 617-349-4278 or my office at the State House at 617-722-2380.
Cambridge and Somerville – map
As many of you know, Cambridge and Somerville were hit with heavy rain and some severe flash flooding last Saturday (July 10th). According to officials from the City of Cambridge, the severity of the flooding was caused by rainfall totaling 3.58” within a one-hour period in Cambridge, and 4.3” in the same hour in Somerville. An inch of that rainfall occurred within 10 minutes—a truly incredible rate that exceeded the capacity of the Cities’ drainage systems.
I am aware of the fact that a number of homes and businesses were damaged by the flooding, and I would like to take this opportunity to offer my support to those who have been impacted, and to make available some important information that may be helpful during this stressful time.
If your home or business was damaged by the flood and you have not yet reported this to your City’s Department of Public Works, please do so! The Cities need to reach a certain damage threshold in order to receieve disaster assistance, and the Cities’ abilities to accurately assess damages is critical to this process. If you are inside Somerville, you can dial 311 to reach the DPW. Cambridge residents should call 617-349-4800 to report damage. Please document any damage to your home or business, and save any receipts that you have from your cleanup.
At the moment, officials from the City of Cambridge and the State are working with FEMA and MEMA (Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency) to coordinate an appropriate response for the victims of the flood. Though it has not yet been determined whether or not disaster assistance funds will be available for the community, it is certainly a possibility.
The Cambridge Department of Public Works has set up a website with information for victims of the flooding: http://www.cambridgema.gov/TheWorks/news/FloodingJuly2010.htm
The City of Somerville has set up a similar website for Somerville residents who have been affected: http://www.somervillema.gov/alert.cfm?alert_id=295
I encourage anyone with questions about the flooding last Saturday to call my office at City Hall at 617-349-4278, or my office at the State House at 617-722-2380.
State House – map
On May 20, 2010, Angela Ward, an eighth grade student at Shady Hill School in Cambridge, was honored at the State House for winning the Grand Prize in the 2010 Credit Union Student Essay Contest. The contest, sponsored by the Massachusetts Credit Union League Inc. and the Massachusetts Credit Union Share Insurance Corporation, asked students this: “if you had unlimited time and money, what aspect of community service would you volunteer for and why?” Angela’s thoughtful and impressively written essay was judged to be the best among more than 1,200 entries from around the Commonwealth.
Tim presents a citation to Angela at the State House.
In her grand prize-winning essay, Angela writes that given unlimited time and money, she would use it to improve the quality of life of our senior citizens. “For five years I have had the privilege of living with my 93-year-old Granddaddy,” she writes. She goes on to describe how her Grandfather has needs, but requires the support and love of those around him to meet those needs. She recognizes, however, the fact that not all seniors have the help that her family is able to give to her Grandfather, and instead require the support of the community in order to have their needs met. What an insightful young woman!
Angela concludes her essay by saying this: “helping elderly people is an investment in their future and ours.” I couldn’t agree more, and in that spirit I will be writing a series of blog posts highlighting the issues our elders face, what services are available to them, and how to volunteer in order to make a difference in their lives. Stay tuned in the weeks ahead for this important information.
Click here to read Angela’s complete essay.