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Truman federal assistance for flood victims largely unused

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TRUMAN, Minn. -


It will be three years this September when Truman was hit hard by flooding.

While a federal disaster declaration didn't happen, some federal funds did become available. But most of those dollars were never used.

"The water in my house...the level came up to within about 6 inches of the first floor, so the entire basement was totally full of water," said Monte Rohman, Truman city clerk.
But Rohman wasn't alone.
"80 percent of the homeowners in Truman were affected by the floodwaters in their basement," Rohman said.
Officials say $195,500 in federal money eventually became available to residents and was funneled through the State. But there was a problem. It took 9 months for that money to become available for eligible homeowners, due to a funding cycle. 
"It's a once a year funding cycle," said Rohman. "Just happened to be in the wrong part of the cycle I guess, and so they were gracious enough to have (Truman) apply for it and help us out, but it just that the program takes time."
One resident News 12 spoke with who declined to go on camera said in many cases, people were denied due to their income level. Out of roughly $196,000 available, approximately $176,000 was never used. Officials say that money is no longer available.
"It was a 2-year program and the end of the program was coming up here the end of June, so we were out of time...and a lot of people were ineligible for the project, so yeah, the time had ran out," said Rohman.
Rohman says only one resident ended up using the federal assistance.

Truman city officials say FEMA does NOT cover basement flooding.