FEMA aid deadline approaches for flood victims

LA VALLE, Wis. (WMTV) - Wisconsin residents with flood damage from August and September have until Monday, Dec. 17 to apply for FEMA assistance.

Sauk Co. officials said that many people who have damage to their homes or businesses have not done so yet.

Jeff Jelinek, the Sauk Co. Emergency Management director, said most of the county is still feeling the effects of the flooding.

“There’s still issues in our county. There is groundwater that is coming into basements. This is kind of a unique situation; we did not have this after the 2008 flood this late in the year,” he said.

The summer floods damaged about 400 homes in the Sauk Co. area, according to Sauk Co. Emergency Management. The floods also caused about $10 million in household damage.

Residents in the Village of La Valle were hit especially hard by the floods.

"We are still getting a lot of groundwater into our sewer system in the village,” said Cody Kowalke, the La Valle village president.

One affordable housing unit for seniors in La Valle was nearly a total loss after the flooding. Volunteers are still working to repair the 8-unit Central Park Apartments.

Charity Sobeck and her husband manage the project. Sobeck said they should have the residents back in their home by the first of the year.

"This building means a lot, and the residents mean a lot to the community and to us personally. That is why we are volunteering our time," Sobeck said.

Kowalke said the village is working to get things back to normal.

“We are in the buyout program for a couple homes and businesses in the immediate flood zone," he said.

To register for FEMA aid, call 800-621-3362 or register online at disasterassistance.gov.