ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The first families are returning home to a North Country area devastated by floods earlier this year.

The state announced Tuesday that five families have moved into new homes in Plattsburgh's Underwood Estates community. Officials called it a "major step" in Plattsburgh's recovery from last January's flood.

Almost 70 families were forced out of their homes when ice jams caused the Saranac River to flood.

Most of the impacted residents will receive new homes when the rebuilding project is complete later this year. The state worked to find temporary housing for families while the work is ongoing.

Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the area is on track for a full recovery. He says the new homes are being built to withstand future flood events.

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