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      FEMA grant to alleviate flooding in Pelham

      Heavy rain brings big flooding trouble for some Pelham neighborhoods. {}It has caused severe damage to homes, several times over. But a new grant is aimed at stopping the flooding. {}The city is getting a grant from FEMA. It will help build water retention ponds - able to keep storm water from flowing into the homes. {}"Obviously it's a big concern if there is a possibility your house could get flooded," Sara Manasco, who lives in Pelham said.Flooding in neighborhoods along Helena Road in Pelham has been devastating for families who lost everything."The water was about 2 inches high in here and it just tore everything up," Jerry Prater, who lives in Saddle Run said after a flood in August 2012. "Because it got in the walls, they had to tear the insulation out."These pictures - from two Summers ago - one of several floods to cause significant damage."Helen, my 80 year old neighbor who I saw carried out by a fireman because she couldn't walk through the flood - she's been flooded three times," Scott Mains, who lives in the Saddle Run neighborhood said in August 2012.Now, the city of Pelham says it's found relief. It got final approval from FEMA on a grant to cover 75% of building costs for water retention ponds. Council President Rick Hayes says it's been been in the works for more than five years. The neighborhoods it aims to fix: Stratford Place, Saddle Run, the Cottages, and Aaron Park. The retention ponds will extend from Helena into Pelham - enabling them to hold more water during a storm. {}Hayes says work should start in about a month and a half. It's expected to be completed by Fall. {}"It will be really great for our neighborhood almost all the houses especially on this side floods," Manasco said. "Our backyard after it rains is a running river through several of our backyards. A couple houses down it flooded a car about 6 or 8 months ago. It would definitely make a huge difference in our neighborhood. "As for neighborhoods closer to Highway 31 that experience flooding, Hayes says the city has a couple different proposals in the works. Right now, it's working on qualification through government programs.