Bertie secures more money

Published 10:41 am Tuesday, October 24, 2017

WINDSOR – There’s more good news to share as Bertie County residents continue to pick up the pieces from back-to-back severe flooding events from one year ago.

On Friday, Bertie County local government was informed it will receive a $1 million CDBG grant through the state for disaster recovery.

Bertie County Manager Scott Sauer said the grant is earmarked for rehabilitation of flood-damaged homes of low to moderate income families.

“This money will serve up to 17 single-family homes,” Sauer said on Monday.

He added that the rehabilitation work to each home is limited to a maximum of $50,000. Residential properties in the Town of Windsor and in the county have been identified to receive the CDBG rehab funds. Those owners are required to meet certain financial criteria in order to be eligible to receive the grants.

“We have been receiving applications from homeowners since (Hurricane) Matthew last October,” Sauer said. “It’s been a rolling process since that time as we have been extremely fortunate to receive disaster assistance from several different sources.”

Among those sources is a $6 million grant announced in July allocated through NC Emergency Management’s Hazard Mitigation Grant Program for Bertie County and the Town of Windsor. Those funds will be applied to approximately 30 residential properties deemed eligible for buyout or elevation. There were a total of 55 identified properties in that particular round of funding. Of those properties, 30 are in the county while the other 25 are located within the town of Windsor.

“Even though we’re blessed to receive that $6 million, we didn’t stop seeking funds for our hard-hit property owners because we had more need than there was money to go around,” Sauer stated. “We kept seeking disaster relief funding in several categories so we could help more residents. It’s because we kept pushing that we were able to receive this CDBG funding.”

And, according to Sauer, that funding quest is not over.

“We’re running after whatever money we can find,” he stressed. “To date, the money we have received is all for residential disaster relief. We’re still searching for funding for our commercial business owners who were severely impacted by last year’s one-two punch from tropical weather systems. Our business owners need help outside of loans. Some of them are still paying off loans they received to reopen for business after Hurricane Floyd in 1999. They need grant funding to help them get back on their feet. We haven’t located such grants as of yet, but we’re not giving up.”

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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