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Fund aids Bertie tornado victims

This home off NC 42 near Colerain was hard hit by the April 16 tornado, one of two twisters that touched down locally that day. File Photo by Cal Bryant

WINDSOR – Those still struggling to get back on their feet due to the April 16 tornadoes that ripped through Bertie County will have another avenue of help.

Beginning Wednesday, those who have unmet needs from the tornadoes will have the opportunity to make those needs known and seek help.

The Bertie County Tornado Relief fund will be used to meet those needs which have not been covered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, insurance or any other financial resource.

The assistance will be provided for medical, utility payments, furniture, appliances, water connections, heating and air system, property taxes and other needs.  More than one need may be met, but priority must be given by the applicants.

Those wishing to apply for the funds should go to the Bertie County JobLink Center, located at 1001 King Street in Windsor. The application days include Wednesday and Thursday. The center will be open from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Wednesday and from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. Thursday.

The other application time will be from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 29.

Those applying for assistance must bring the following information: FEMA control number, photo identification, proof of Bertie County residency and documentation of income.

Those applying for utility assistance, water connection assistance or property tax assistance must bring a copy of a recent bill.

Likewise, those wishing to seek medical assistance should bring verification, to include prescriptions, notes from a doctor, etc. as well as the name and phone number of the pharmacy and/or medical supply company.

Those applying for assistance with heating or air systems will need to bring an estimate from the company regarding the cost for the work to be completed.

The money being distributed is part of a fund established by Bertie officials when donors gave to aid the county’s victims. It was established by the county and held until all other parties had an opportunity to meet needs.

Recently, the Bertie County Board of Commissioners authorized a committee to begin the process of determining how the funds would be distributed. Those appointed to the board included Commission Chairman L.C. Hoggard III, Askewville Mayor John Pierce, Colerain Mayor Burney Baker, DSS Director Morris Rascoe, Bertie Emergency Management Coordinator Rickey Freeman, Relief and Recovery Team Chair Misty Deanes and community leaders Artie Johnson, the Rev. Mary Drake, Jamie Crumpler, the Rev. Brenda Chamblee and the Rev. Vonner Horton.

Funds for approved applicants will go directly to the vendor.

Persons needing transportation assistance should call 794-5300.