Repairing and Rebuilding in the State of New York – NY Rising Disaster Recovery Program

IEM served as Program Manager for New York State’s $1.2 billion CDBG–DR Housing recovery program to repair, rebuild and elevate homes damaged by Hurricane Sandy and Tropical Storms Irene and Lee. Despite taking over the program from a previous contractor and having to repair many applicant files, IEM achieved on overall 98.7 accuracy rate in distributing $902 million in CDBG-DR funds to over 11,000 homeowners. With IEM’s dual focus on quickly getting families home after the devastation caused by Sandy and program cost effectiveness, New York Rising stands out as exemplary among major, recent disaster recovery housing programs.

The IEM Team performed application reviews on nearly 20,000 applicants, made eligibility determinations, performed verification of benefits, and made on-time disbursals of eligible grants to individual applicants in compliance with all applicable state and federal regulations.

Prior to full implementation, the State engaged IEM to assess housing program design, provide technical assistance on Section 3 and MWBE compliance, and policies/procedures so as to identify cost and customer-conscious opportunities for creating and institutionalizing more robust operations.

IEM’s full implementation effort led to the following notable accomplishments:

  • Brought in 6,000 new program applicants in a single month (a year after the program started)
  • Conducted four program assessments resulting in $1.8 million in delivery cost savings
  • Held over 14,000 intake meetings with program applicants
  • Finalized over 13,000 homeowner eligibility reviews and >12,000 benefit verifications
  • Completed 6,000 title and AFWA reviews in just twelve weeks
  • Confirmed over 8,000 title reviews, saving New York State $3 million in acquisition costs
  • Generated and provisioned 18,881 grant agreements to homeowners
  • Gave out over 20,000 checks to homeowners totaling almost $500 million; 5,000 checks for $100 million distributed in 60 days