NC asks for $900M in flood relief, feds give $6.1M, Cooper says

Posted May 10

— North Carolina asked the federal government for $900 million to help relieve parts of the state ravaged by Hurricane Matthew flood waters, but the government only offered $6.1 million, Gov. Roy Cooper said in a news conference on Wednesday.

The $6 million of relief money is less than 1 percent of what the state asked for.

"I am deeply disappointed that Washington isn’t making North Carolina’s urgent need a top priority," the governor said.

"Matthew did an estimated $4.8 billion in damages to 50 counties in North Carolina," Cooper said during a news conference about the state's preparations for hurricane season. "That’s half of our entire state.”

Earl Nail is one of those still struggling. Seven months after Matthew, the Vietnam veteran is still waiting on the bulk of the federal funds he’s been promised to help rebuild his life.

"A lot of people still suffering," Nail said. "I haven’t got paid yet, but yet I hear billions and millions to send overseas and doing this and doing that, billions for building walls. Come on, man, you know how many people are out there suffering."

In a letter to Congress, Cooper asked for what he calls a "conservative" $930 million to help families rebuild homes, repair businesses and recover from the flooding that inundated North Carolina after the October hurricane.

“Matthew was a historic storm, and we are still working every day to help families return home and rebuild their communities," Cooper said. "North Carolinians affected by this storm cannot be ignored by the Trump administration and Congressional leadership, and I will continue to work with our Congressional delegation to get North Carolina residents affected by the storm the help they deserve.”

Rep. Robert Pittenger, (NC-9), who represents Robeson, Cumberland and Bladen counties, says he never heard from the governor about the request.

He and other lawmakers point to millions already given to the state. In December, Congress passed a resolution that provided more than $300 million, Sen. Thom Tillis' office said.

Princeville flooding

Cooper said he invited President Donald Trump and Congressional leaders to North Carolina to tour the affected areas where the needs include:

Housing Repairs: $166.6 million to help homeowners with repairs, $63.7 million to repair rental housing, and $15.2 million to repair public housing

Housing Elevation: $434 million for buyout, elevation and reconstruction of 3,962 properties that flooded during Matthew and are at risk for future flooding

Agriculture: $92.6 million to cover losses for farmers not covered by the USDA such as livestock, farm equipment, and feed

Public Facilities: $43 million to repair public facilities and retrofit infrastructure like storm drains and sewer lines to prevent future damage

Small Businesses: $39 million to help 691 small businesses

Health: $37 million to support health and mental health services for storm survivors and to help with repairs to health care facilities, child care centers, and social services agencies


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  • Brenda Lawrence May 11, 10:59 a.m.
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    I understand NC recently paid Suisse Credit 40 mil to bring 1,000 jobs here...I thought lower corp taxes were supposed to entice businesses to come here! So why do we have to bribe them? And why do some businesses get preferential treatment over others? This is wrong wrong wrong!

  • Zeke Reynolds May 11, 9:35 a.m.
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    Flood insurance isn't going to bring back someone's lost job or put food back on the table.

    The federal government just said "screw you, help yourself if you can" to the people of North Carolina. How about instead of badgering disaster victims about responsibility, we hold our government responsible for how they spend OUR money?

  • Kelly Paris May 11, 8:13 a.m.
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    If we didn't waste so much on military spending, we'd probably get that money. But occupying other countries is more important I guess. SMH

  • Jerry Powell May 10, 11:04 p.m.
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    So, how may of the properties are we going to pay for..... AGAIN. May I suggest the responsible solution? Buy flood insurance. Take responsibility for yourself and your property, and take a lesson from the past.

  • Steve Allen May 10, 6:19 p.m.
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    yea I'm sure you voted for him. Cry me a river🤡

  • Steve Allen May 10, 6:18 p.m.
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    yea and all the trips Obama took to Hawaii we paid for those try again liberal

  • Michael Lloyd May 10, 6:16 p.m.
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    And you expected what from trump? Suckers...this is one swamp he won't drain....suckers...

  • Bob Jenkins May 10, 6:02 p.m.
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    According to data (, FEMA has obligated over $20 million dollars in Public Assistance (debris removal, roads, bridges, etc.) because of Matthew. I don't know if this is sufficient, but just the funds for Public Assistance is much greater that the $6.1 million that Cooper states is available. Once again Democrats will never let facts get in the way of demonizing President Trump

  • Zeke Reynolds May 10, 4:29 p.m.
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    I cannot believe Trump would do this to the people of NC. I just saw where the fed budget spent $60M just for security since he's keeping houses in FL, NY and NJ instead of the White House. So Trump is spending TEN TIMES as much money for himself to keep 3 extra houses, than he is helping the desperate people in rural NC.

    I am shocked and VERY VERY VERY disappointed that he looked us in the eye and said he was a man of the people, then uses taxpayer money to live that way while the people WHOSE MONEY IT IS cannot get a roof over their heads.

  • John Archer May 10, 4:13 p.m.
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    Better get used to no help from the Federal government after a disaster. States are on their own, which means NC taxpayers will have to pick up the tab, just like this.