Governor Cooper today expressed his disappointment in the Trump Administration and Congressional leadership after they failed to fulfill North Carolina’s funding request for Hurricane Matthew recovery. In a letter, Cooper urged for more robust aid, especially in the form of housing block grants from HUD, in the upcoming budget process. That letter can be read here.
Last month, Cooper worked with Senator Thom Tillis and Representatives David Price and David Rouzer on compiling an unmet needs request to Congress. This week, state officials learned that of the more than $900 million requested, North Carolina will receive just $6.1 million, less than 1% of the resources needed to help communities and families fix homes, repair businesses and recover from the historic flooding. In today’s letter, Governor Cooper reiterated the critical and immediate need for support and urged the President to visit affected communities to better understand the challenges that remain.
“Families across Eastern North Carolina need help to rebuild and recover, and it is an incredible failure by the Trump Administration and Congressional leaders to turn their backs,” said Cooper. “Matthew was a historic storm and we are still working every day to help families return home and rebuild their communities. North Carolinians affected by this storm cannot be ignored by the Trump Administration and Congressional leadership, and I will continue to work with our Congressional delegation to get North Carolina residents affected by the storm the help they deserve.”
The Trump Administration’s Housing and Urban Development agency (HUD) is responsible for determining unmet recovery needs, which is a $600 million request for North Carolina, but the agency allowed for only $6 million. Remaining Congressional requests for crop damage, business repair and public buildings were ignored.
Summary of North Carolina’s federal unmet needs request:
- Housing Repairs: $166.6 million to help homeowners with repairs, $63.7 million to repair rental housing, and $15.2 million to repair public housing.
- Housing Elevation: $434 million for buyout, elevation and reconstruction of 3,962 properties that flooded during Matthew and are at risk for future flooding.
- Agriculture: $92.6 million to cover losses for farmers not covered by the USDA such as livestock, farm equipment, and feed.
- Public Facilities: $43 million to repair public facilities and retrofit infrastructure like storm drains and sewer lines to prevent future damage.
- Small Businesses: $39 million to help 691 small businesses.
- Health: $37 million to support health and mental health services for storm survivors and to help with repairs to health care facilities, child care centers, and social services agencies.