Local News

Residents In Eastern N.C. Face Shortage of Contractors

Posted December 21, 1999 6:00 a.m. EST

— The hammers and saws are working overtime in the eastern part of the state.

It will be months before all the homes are rebuilt. Unfortunately, there is too much work to do and not enough contractors to go around.

Ronnie Griffin, a property owner, says he is finally able to move back into his home.

"It has taken a long time," Griffin said. "I think that we will be here another three weeks. I will be looking forward to getting it done so we can get my daughter back here."

For hundreds of homeowners, there is a much longer road ahead.

Even in cases where the rebuilding money is available, there are not enough contractors to handle the workload.

Wayne Hughes, a contractor and a flood victim himself, says he knows other contractors who have started on a couple of houses, but they already have their hands full with work to do.

"A contractor can only do so much," Hughes said. "So, he goes from there and does what he can do."

Hughes does not plan to move back into his flood-damaged home until February at the earliest. He is trying to help other homeowners on the side, but there is only so much time and energy available.

"You can't do it overnight," Hughes said. "If you have seven or eight people with you, and everyone knows what they are doing, you can do a house in about a month and a half."