Some Sherburne residents asked to evacuate

Flooding in Sherburne Thursday morning / photo: Jim Kenyon

The village of Sherburne is advising some residents to evacuate due to record flooding. Mayor William Acee ordered the evacuation overnight when the heavy rains from the remnants of tropical storm Lee caused the Chenango River to flood parts of the village. "No one wants to leave their home. It's a tough call but ultimately safer for people to get out of their houses." Acee told CNY Central's Jim Kenyon.

The village advised anyone on North Main Street (Route 12) and West State Street to immediately evacuate their homes. This includes side streets in that area. Village officials say the Chenango River at Sherburne crested at about 3 and a half feet above flood stage at 9:15am Thursday morning. Acee said that level is an all time high.

Acee says about 30 evacuees were sent to the Chenango BOCES on County Route 32 in North Norwich.

Gary Patterson decided to tough it out. He says he moved his pets and belongings to an upper floor when the flood waters arrived at his door at the Westlake Village housing complex. "We'll weather it. Got to keep a smile" he said, "can't control mother nature."

Mayor Acee says Sherburne should qualify for disaster assistance for all the damage to homes and businesses. He points out that the village has flooded a number of times in the past, most recently this past spring. "We need someone to come in, like the Army Corps of Engineers and take a look at this situation. We keep getting repeated floods in the same place. We need some help." Acee said.

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Thursday that he has directed ordered state employees and resources, including the National Guard, to the Southern Tier and surrounding counties.

"With the recent heavy rains and severe flash flooding, we are on the verge of a crisis and federal assistance is urgently needed to help protect New Yorkers," Cuomo said in a statement to the media. "I have directed state resources to areas that are currently experiencing widespread flooding to assist with emergency procedures."

Cuomo says he has requested federal emergency and major disaster declarations for Albany, Broome, Chenango, Chemung, Delaware, Greene, Herkimer, Montgomery, Oneida, Otsego, Rensselaer, Schenectady, Schoharie, Sullivan and Tioga counties.