Vermont Public is independent, community-supported media, serving Vermont with trusted, relevant and essential information. We share stories that bring people together, from every corner of our region. New to Vermont Public? Start here.

© 2024 Vermont Public | 365 Troy Ave. Colchester, VT 05446

Public Files:

For assistance accessing our public files, please contact or call 802-655-9451.
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Hundreds of Vermonters say their homes are uninhabitable, thousands report flooding damage

More than 750 Vermonters now say their dwellings are uninhabitable due to flooding, and state and federal officials say it’s crucial that homeowners and renters who haven’t reported damage yet do so immediately so that the state “can paint an accurate picture” of the flood damage in Vermont.

Vermont’s 2-1-1 hotline has received 4,290 calls related to the flooding as of Thursday morning, Commissioner of Public Safety Jennifer Morrison said at a news conference.

At a briefing Thursday, Morrison said that more than a third of those reports have come Washington County. Windsor County accounts for 12% of 2-1-1 reports. And while Lamoille County represents 9% of calls, Morrison said damage there has been disproportionately severe.

More background: Which areas in Vermont were hit hardest in the July flooding?

“Of the 392 reports we have received from Lamoille County, 181 callers reported that their home was uninhabitable,” Morrison said.

 An aerial photo of roads and businesses submerged by flood waters
Sam Davies
Flooding at the Jeffersonville roundabout on Tuesday morning. As of Wednesday morning, the Lamoille River had receded but was still considered in a moderate flood stage.

Morrison urged impacted residents to report any flood-related damage, no matter its severity, by going online to, or calling 2-1-1.

“Every bit of the storm damage, whether it’s a car, driveway, a wet basement that you’ve pumped out yourself already, lost possessions, a blown culvert, anything that was damaged due to flood water should be reported so that we can paint an accurate picture of the flood damage in Vermont,” she said.

FEMA adds another county to emergency declaration

Residents of hard-hit Orleans County got news Thursday morning that they’ve been added to the list of counties that are eligible for individual assistance.

The addition brings the number of counties eligible for individual assistance to nine, according to William Roy, who serves as the coordinating officer for the Federal Emergency Management Agency in Vermont.

Roy said residents in declared counties that have experienced damage “directly tied to the storm” should first call 2-1-1, and then contact FEMA at either 1-800-621-3362, or by going to

 A man in a white button-down speaks at a podium
Bob Kinzel
Vermont Public
William Roy, FEMA federal coordinating officer, speaks at a press conference Wednesday, July 19.

Roy said individuals that have already received financial assistance from FEMA but whose circumstances have since changed, such as having to leave their dwelling due to mold, may be eligible for additional aid.

More from Vermont Public and VTDigger: A guide to the FEMA aid process for flooded Vermont homes

And he said residents that have been turned down for assistance, but are now experiencing more flood-related problems, can either contact FEMA by phone or online, or by visiting one of the four disaster recovery centers FEMA has established:

  • 11 Armory Drive in Waterbury
  • 16 Auditorium Hill in Barre
  • 88 Merchant Row in Rutland
  • 91 VT Rt. 11 in Londonderry

Roy said all 14 counties in Vermont are eligible for compensation from FEMA for “emergency protective measures for activities associated with life-saving and life-sustaining operations.”
And 11 counties, according to Roy, will get assistance for damage to public infrastructure, such as roads, bridges, culverts and municipal buildings.

State to launch flood relief grant program for businesses

State officials say a $20 million grant program for businesses that suffered flood damage will begin accepting applications next week, and that financial aid will arrive seven to 10 days after the program launches.

Gov. Phil Scott called the initiative a small first step in what will need to be a well-funded long-term recovery operations.

“I want to be clear right up front — $20 million will not be enough, won’t even come close to reach the total need or reach all impacted businesses,” he said Thursday. “But we know it’s important to do what we can as soon as possible.”

A man in a bright blue shirt talks to three people outside.
Peter Hirschfeld
Vermont Public
Doug and Cheri Safford meet with representatives from FEMA outside their home and retail store in Glover.

Scott said the state will target grants toward businesses and nonprofits that need capital to “get people back to work” and resume business operations.

Commissioner of Economic Development Joan Goldstein said grant awards will amount to 20% of “net documented damage,” up to a maximum of $20,000.

Damages eligible for grant funding, according to Goldstein, could include inventory, equipment, supplies, and physical building space. She said the state will deduct offsetting aid – whether it’s flood insurance payments, private fundraisers or other grant programs — when calculating “net documented damage.”

She said the state may raise the grant cap at larger businesses whose damages exceed $1 million, “depending on the level of employees that have been at that organization that have been laid off.”

Five percent of overall grant funding is being set aside for agriculture businesses that experienced flood losses.

Have questions, comments or tips? Send us a message or get in touch with reporter Peter Hirschfeld:


The Vermont Statehouse is often called the people’s house. I am your eyes and ears there. I keep a close eye on how legislation could affect your life; I also regularly speak to the people who write that legislation.
Latest Stories