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Audit shows thousands still waiting for home repair or rebuild after Hurricanes Matthew and Florence

The Coleman family home, damaged beyond repair by floodwaters from Hurricane Florence.
Elizabeth Coleman
File photo: This home was damaged beyond repair by floodwaters from Hurricane Florence.

A new federal audit shows recent hurricane victims in North Carolina have been impacted by a slow state response and thousands remain homeless while they wait for their homes to be repaired or rebuilt.

ReBuild NC is the state-run program that uses federal money to rebuild low-income communities impacted by storms, and the audit identified how North Carolina spent millions in disaster relief after Hurricane Matthew in October 2016.

North Carolina was later awarded an additional federal disaster recovery grant for Hurricane Florence.

The audit showed that out of the nearly 4,200 applicants that applied for relief since both storms, only 789 applicants have had their homes completely rebuilt or repaired.

The audit determined that the state had the capacity to administer the grant money but it failed to follow proper requirements and procedures.

See the full audit here: https://www.hudoig.gov/sites/default/files/2022-09/2022-AT-1002.pdf

Annette is originally a Midwest gal, born and raised in Michigan, but with career stops in many surrounding states, the Pacific Northwest, and various parts of the southeast. She has been involved in the media industry in eastern North Carolina for more than three years. An award-winning journalist and mother of four, Annette moved to ENC to be closer to family – in particular, her two young grandchildren. It’s possible that a -27 day with a -68 windchill in Minnesota may have also played a role in that decision. In her spare time, Annette does a lot of toddler and baby cuddling, reading, designing costumes for children’s theater and producing the coolest Halloween costumes anyone has ever seen. She has also worked as a diversity and inclusion facilitator serving school districts and large corporations. It’s the people that make this beautiful area special, and she wants to share those stories that touch the hearts of others. If you have a story idea to share, please reach out by email to westona@cravencc.edu.