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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Idaho

Flood relocation funding request for Cataldo residents put on hold

From staff reports

Cataldo residents are going to have to wait a little longer to get federal money that could help them relocate out of the reach of the Coeur d’Alene River, which occasionally spills its banks and floods the town.

Kootenai and Shoshone county commissioners have decided to postpone their efforts to get a $3 million federal grant because they don’t currently have the cash to contribute up to $750,000 of the cost.

Kootenai County Project Manager Sheryl Craig said that the county will try to apply for the Federal Emergency Management Agency grant next year and in the meantime look for other grants that could help them with the cost of the match money.

“It’s a lot of money,” Craig said. “The county doesn’t have that kind of cash lying around.”

About 25 property owners in both Kootenai and Shoshone counties could be eligible for a buyout because they live in the “flood way.” The flood way is a path the Coeur d’Alene River will take when it spills its banks.

The counties tried for the same grant last year but the application wasn’t accepted because of problems with the cost-analysis section.

Not all the residents of the small community, straddling the border of Kootenai and Shoshone counties, are confident any government’s offer would be good enough for them to afford to move. They worry that a buyout wouldn’t include a fair price for their land and home.

Craig said the county plans to meet with residents within the next six months to give them an update.

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