Waukon flood victims paying thousands in out-of-pocket expenses - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Waukon flood victims paying thousands in out-of-pocket expenses

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It's been two months since devastating and unprecedented flooding raged through the city of Waukon, and many homeowners and business owners there face thousands of dollars in out-of-pocket expenses.

Julie Bloxham and her husband Randy are two of those homeowners.

Working at Kwik Star in Waukon, Julie Bloxham sees a lot of supportive faces.

"You know, 'How's the house coming?' and they're all very happy we're back in the house," she said Thursday at Kwik Star.

Floodwaters did some $18,000 of damage to the Bloxhams' home, overnight between June 22 and 23.

"We were rescued then from our home," Bloxham said. "They had to break the door down, too, to get inside the home to get us out. The water came up that fast."

The water displaced the Bloxhams. Up until last week, they were living with family as they repaired their home.

The flood damaged nearly 600 home and businesses throughout Allamakee County.

Since Waukon isn't in a flood plain, however, people there can't buy flood insurance even if they want it. On top of that, the state's disaster relief was only for low-income people, and FEMA is only offering assistance to public entities, such as the city.

That leaves middle-income flood victims like the Bloxhams paying thousands of dollars out-of-pocket. High and dry, so to speak.

In response, the community has created a donation-based relief fund, offering up to $500 per home for a furnace or water heater replacement. It's not thousands of dollars, but it's a start. More importantly, it shows the community cares.

"I couldn't ask for a better community and Kwik Trip family and my family to be with," Bloxham said.

Waukon is a city committed to recovering from this flood.

Allamakee County emergency management coordinator Chris Dahlstrom said he doesn't have a dollar figure for private-sector damages, but county-wide public damage, like to roads, bridges and sewers, he said, is about $2.1 million.

Anyone wishing to contribute to the Allamakee County Relief Fund can contact the county's economic development office in Waukon, at 563-568-2624.

Applications for relief are due Sept. 1.

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