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Governor Cooper Visits Washington To Push for More Florence Recovery Help from Federal Government Cooper Stressed North Carolina’s Outstanding Needs with Congressional Delegation, HUD, and the White House

WASHINGTON, D.C.

Governor Roy Cooper today met with the North Carolina Congressional delegation and key federal officials to push for more federal assistance with Hurricane Florence recovery efforts. The storm, which took 41 lives in North Carolina, caused an estimated $17 billion in damages in North Carolina—more than Hurricanes Floyd and Matthew combined—and dumped 8 trillion gallons of rain in the state making it the heaviest rains in east coast history.

Cooper had a productive meeting with the state’s Congressional delegation to advocate for further recovery funding that Congress can consider immediately. Funding will be needed from a broad spectrum of federal sources to address housing, infrastructure, agriculture and businesses.

In the meeting, Cooper and the delegation also discussed changes to federal law that should be made to increase the state’s flexibility to use federal funds after being hit by two major storms in under two years. Cooper stressed that any Community Development Block Grant—Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) awards granted to North Carolina for any qualifying event that occurred in 2016 through 2018 should be combined into a single award to streamline the recovery effort and speed help to affected communities.

“I appreciate how closely our delegation is working to invest what is needed in North Carolina’s Florence recovery,” said Cooper. “It is going to be a true team effort to help families, schools, businesses and farmers recover from the devastation that is still facing communities across much of our state."

Following his meeting on Capitol Hill, Cooper met with Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson and White House Homeland Security Advisor Rear Admiral Doug Fears.

Cooper continued to push Secretary Carson and top HUD officials for maximum flexibility in how Community Development Block Grant- Disaster Relief (CDBG-DR) funds can be spent. Earlier this year, Congress passed legislation that promised CDBG-DR funding for North Carolina to use on Florence recovery, but that money is not yet available for the state to put to work. 

With Secretary Carson, Cooper also pressed for an approval of a waiver and guidance from HUD on a recent change that could open more federal recovery funding for almost 2,000 affected North Carolinians. For more about that important change, please click HERE.

Later today, with the White House Homeland Security Advisor, Cooper will stress the need for federal partners to support the state’s goal of rebuilding smarter to help lessen the impact of future storms.  

“North Carolina has shown that we are prepared to do what’s needed to help our communities, but we know that we will need more federal assistance after Florence devastated half of our state,” said Cooper. “When a storm rolls in, it doesn’t have a party label and our recovery efforts can’t either. It’s important for me to be in Washington to push the case for what we need to recover smarter and stronger.”

North Carolina homeowners and renters who sustained property damage or loss caused by Hurricane Florence have until December 13, 2018 to register for Individual Assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA). The Individual Assistance program provides assistance to homeowners and renters with temporary housing, essential home repairs, personal property replacement, and serious disaster-related needs.

To register for help from FEMA, North Carolinians can:

Already, more than 133,000 North Carolinians have registered with FEMA and $113.8 million has been approved in FEMA assistance to individuals and households as of today.