Lawmakers, residents call on federal government for Matthew aid

ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. (WNCT) — It’s been nearly eight months since Hurricane Matthew swept through the East, but many people are still displaced from their homes.

Congressman G.K. Butterfield held a news conference to inform the public of the work being done at the state and federal level.

Linda Worsley has lived in Princeville for 65 years and spoke at the event.

“My home was destroyed for the second time in the last 18 years,” she said. “Floyd had destroyed everything I had before. And now, Matthew has done the same thing again.”

Worsley said this time, recovery has been slow in all areas, “Some of our schools system and our school children are living in Greenville and having to be transported from Greenville back to Tarboro in order to go to school.”

It’s all an issue that Congressman G.K. Butterfield said needs to be resolved now.

“This is a very desperate situation,” said Butterfield. “We cannot control natural disasters and we’ve had our share of natural disasters in eastern North Carolina over the last 17 years. And there’s surely more to come.”

Butterfield made a plea for both sides of the aisle to come together for the sake of relief.

“My Republican colleagues are really well placed in the House,” he said. “Each of them made a commitment to Governor Cooper, in my presence, that they would work very hard in trying to sway the appropriators to make sure the 2018 budget includes sufficient funding for the recovery effort.”

For Worsley and her family, it has been about getting the chance to restart their lives.

“My mother is 91 and my father is 92 and all they’re talking about is going back home,” Worsley said. “I really don’t know if they’ll ever get back home.”

Butterfield said the money that has been present so far has come out of last year’s budget and future relief depends on the new budget Congress passes. He said it’s now in the hands of congressional Republicans to allocate money for the relief.


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