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Gates blames FEMA for flood problems

Gates, N.Y. -- Town leaders have blamed a problem that could be costing residents thousands of dollars on the federal government.

They said the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) drew outdated and flawed flood maps in Gates, leaving more than 250 residents in flood zones.

Those homeowners have been hit with skyrocketing flood insurance rates, and they want to be compensated.

I went from $1,300 to $1,900, said David Smith. I should be able to take that $1,900 and write it off on my taxes. I didnt buy that house knowing it was going to be in a flood zone. Give me something back.

This is going to reduce the value of our house by 50 percent, said Bruce Coleman. In other words, my largest investment of our lifetime is gone. Its just swept away.

Supervisor Mark Assini said the town is exploring the idea of suing FEMA and also possibly opting out of flood insurance. It will hold another public meeting once plans are finalized.

Rep. Louise Slaughter, Assinis opponent in this falls election for the states 25th Congressional District seat, said she has scheduled a workshop with FEMA later this year to discuss the maps.

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Washington Times