N.C. Governor asks for billions to float hurricane recovery

WASHINGTON (Gray DC) -- Gov. Roy Cooper wades through ‘The Swamp’ in hopes of floating North Carolina’s storm recovery. Two months after Hurricane Florence struck North Carolina – leaving an historic level of devastation behind – Gov. Roy Cooper (D-NC) is asking for more help from the nation’s capital.

It’s estimated the storm caused $17 billion in damages. The state’s received a little more than one billion dollars from the federal government. Now, the Governor’s looking for an additional five billion.

The governor met with Tarheel State lawmakers on Capitol Hill Wednesday morning – and followed that by taking his pitch to key players in the Trump Administration.

Cooper said if North Carolina can secure five billion dollars from FEMA and the Agency of Housing and Urban Development, the state can build back smarter. That, he said, is critical to weathering the next big storm.

“They’re not 500 year floods, they’re coming again,” he said, “we’ve got to figure out how to build back stronger and smarter, and that’s one of our major goals here [in D.C.].”

Cooper said more federal help is essential for improving infrastructure and helping farmers. But, priority number one for the governor, is ensuring all North Carolinians can find a place to call home.

“Affordable housing was a problem even before the storm. The storm put a magnifying glass on it,” he said, “people need affordable, clean, safe places to live, and with this storm, it shows us that we’ve got more to do.”

Cooper said the state’s aid request is in-line with what the federal government has done to help other storm-battered states in the past. He’s also asking for greater flexibility in how North Carolina spends any aid it receives.