Additional Disaster Housing Recovery Updates – May 6, 2019

The following is a review of additional disaster housing recovery developments since the last edition of Memo to Members and Partners (for the article in the previous Memo, see 4/29). 

Midwest Flooding


Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition member Team Rubicon was featured in a local Nebraska story about their flood-response efforts throughout the region as well as an upcoming effort to assist Pine Ridge, South Dakota.

The Ethel S. Abbott Charitable Foundation and Nebraska Community Foundation announced the creation of a Nebraska Flood Recovery Fund. The focus will be on community development rebuilding efforts that go “beyond what relief organizations like the Red Cross and Salvation Army are designed to do.”

2018 California Wildfires

An update from the California Office of Emergency Services (OES) reports that FEMA is supporting 295 households with mobile or temporary housing units.

California utility PG&E equipment caused, or was connected to, wildfires in 2015, 2017, and 2018. The company – which filed for bankruptcy in January 2019 – recently stated that they are unsure when they will establish a housing assistance fund or compensate survivors.

Hurricane Michael


State Response

Governor Ron DeSantis (R) announced that Florida has been awarded an additional $5.8 million in federal funding through the National Dislocated Worker Grant to provide disaster relief employment through temporary jobs to support clean-up and recovery efforts.

The Florida Legislature’s spending plan will include $200 million for affordable housing, $115 million of which will go to communities in the Panhandle most impacted by Hurricane Michael.

Local Perspectives

Panama City is seeking approval from FEMA to use its surplus trailers – staged for Marianna and never used – for interim housing for Hurricane Michael survivors. About 100 trailers have gone unclaimed because FEMA could not contact survivors. The city’s community development department is already taking applications from families seeking a place to live in case the effort is approved.

The first draft of Bay County’s full recovery plan is complete. After initial feedback from task force members and stakeholders, the Bay County Long-Term Recovery Task Force plans to make the draft available for public input. An overview of the hundreds of proposals included in the report can be found here.

Hurricane Florence

North Carolina

Advocates and residents in Pender County say an increase in cases of respiratory sickness in the low-income community of Maple Hill are related to post-hurricane mold caused by a lack of attention from government officials and donors.