Princeville residents weigh option of taking FEMA buyout to leave town

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Residents of Princeville rocked by the devastating flood waters of Hurricane Matthew now face a decision of a lifetime: Stay in Princeville or move away from the place they’ve spent most of their lives.

The Army Corps of Engineers worked for days to pump the floodwaters out of Princeville.

The waters are now gone and FEMA is proposing a buyout for residents to leave.

Currently, mud covers the dead leaves on trees indicating how high the water was in town.

That water damaged homes so badly they are no longer repairable.

Angela Sherrod had nine feet of water inside her home, a home that’s been stripped clean because she salvaged what she could.

After experiencing the floods of Hurricane Floyd back in 1999 and the floods of Matthew, she’s now thinking the buyout might be right for her.

“This is my land, I do wanna come back but I’m scared to come back because it may happen again,” Sherrod said. “So I probably will want to do the buyout.”

Others said despite the flood waters, which inundated this historic town founded by former slaves in 1885 there’s too much history here to abandon the place.

“Me and my mom talked about it we’re going to stay in Princeville and rebuild,” said Lamean Godwyn.

Because of flood damage to public buildings in Princeville, Fema outlines its buyout proposal tomorrow night at a meeting across the river at the Tarboro High School.

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