May 28, 2019

Manchin Praises Additional $106 Million For West Virginia Disaster Relief | WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Senator Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., praised another $106 million flowing from the federal government for West Virginia disaster relief.

The additional money, part of a broader disaster relief package, was approved by Congress and President Trump in February 2018 but “has been mired in bureaucratic red tape and Administrative reviews,” according to a statement from Manchin’s congressional office.

The money was approved last week as part of a $19.1 billion disaster relief package.

“I am so glad that finally the disaster relief package has passed so we can get these much needed resources to the people of West Virginia and other areas of the country that have been hit by horrible natural disasters,” Manchin stated.

“In my state, we have been waiting more than a year to receive this funding to help rebuild in the aftermath of terrible flooding.”

The money will go for mitigation and resilience activities through the Department of Housing and Urban Development Community Development Block Grant – Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) program.

This will be in addition to the $149,875,000 in Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Relief money that West Virginia has drawn down already from HUD as an outcome of the devastating flood of June 23, 2016.

Of the money that was approved to be expended starting in February, 2018, West Virginia still had $135,261,157 at the start of this past month, according to HUD.

The most recent update on RISE West Virginia showed that of 479 housing cases remaining, 50 have been completed.

The report stated that 25 homes are in active construction for the RISE West Virginia program, while three homes are in the demolition phase.

Adjutant General James Hoyer, West Virginia’s point man on flood relief, made reference to the impending $106 million during a meeting last month of the Joint Legislative Committee on Flooding.

Hoyer said state officials would need to examine the language about the funding in the Federal Register, look at what guidelines are for the HUD dollars and move from there.

“Our hope is that there’s some pretty good flexibility in that $106 million of HUD mitigation money that we can work to address some of those challenges going forward,” Hoyer said.


By:  Brad McElhinny