Gov. Cooper checks in on Fayetteville’s recovery from Matthew

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) — Gov. Roy Cooper returned to Fayetteville on Thursday to assess progress from Hurricane Matthew recovery efforts.

Cooper visited “Habitat Village” where more than 90 homes were damaged.

Many of the residents who live in habitat village are still displaced.

Habitat for Humanity says nearly every home there suffered between $15,000 and $40,000 in flood damage.

Volunteers have been hard at work to help restore 66 homes destroyed by Hurricane Matthew’s flood waters.

“All this water in the neighborhood, four feet, I’m walking up to water at my neck and then we had to take all the furniture, all the walls had to come out, the flooring had to come out,” said Victoria Rhone, who is still displaced.

Rhone was among those who lived in the village, which was financed through Habitat for Humanity.

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She and her family are currently living with relatives while their home is under reconstruction.

“We’ve been here for 20 years, and out of the house now for seven months,” Rhone said.

Cooper joined volunteers to help speed up the process of getting people back in their homes.

Habitat executives say a backlog in general contractors caused delays.

Cooper says the state is working hard to make more resources available.

“We’re pushing the feds. We’re working as hard as we can to try to get this relief out there and on the ground, and we’re asking for significantly more from Congress,” Cooper said.

That additional request being $929 million from Congress to help pay for home repairs, more affordable housing, and schools damaged.

Also Thursday, Cooper signed legislation that waives certain restrictions for unemployment benefits after natural disasters such as Matthew.

The Rhones hope to be back inside their home in the next few weeks.

For other families it could take a couple more months.

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