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Temporary Housing Over For Floyd Victims

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Sixty million dollars in federal and state money has gone into housing for Hurricane Floyd victims, but the state says Thursday will be the final deadline for free housing.

After FEMA'S housing deadline expired in March, the state picked up the cost. Now, officials say the final deadline is coming up and most of the homes are already gone. At the height of the disaster, 2,400 families were in mobile units.

"One of the things to remember about the temporary housing program is that is supposed to be temporary. Initially, it is for 18 months after a disaster," said Renee Hoffman of the North Carolina Crime Control and Public Safety. "In this case, we got FEMA to give us another year because of the magnitude of the housing problem in eastern North Carolina."

Twenty-eight families remain in the mobile homes and almost all of them have a plan to move out in a few days. The state says out of all the families that have lived in these houses, only two people are refusing to leave. They will likely be evicted.

Otis Brown is excited to be moving from his rent-free trailer. He's close to getting a new job and has nothing but praise for the way recovery workers have helped him.

"We were supposed to be out of here in March and they knew how jobs were, so they came back and gave us another six months. What can you ask for better than that?" he said.

Of the 28 families still in rent-free housing, most live in Edgecombe County. A few also live in Pitt and Duplin counties.


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