Gov. Cooper in Eastern Carolina to check on hurricane recovery

CRAVEN COUNTY, NC (WITN) Governor Cooper was in eastern Carolina Tuesday assessing what still needs to be done for school systems and homeowners recovering following Hurricane Florence.

Governor Cooper had a warm welcome at James W. Smith Elementary in Craven County, where all students and staff were displaced for several weeks following Florence, forcing them to share a school at West Craven High School.

Cooper says, "It's just another example of how people have come together after this horrible storm that has hit eastern North Carolina, and is still affecting people today."

Florence caused new damage, but public schools needed help before the storm.

Cooper says, "The needs of our public schools across our state were over $8 million even before Florence hit, so we know that the needs are significant."

The governor has proposed a $2 billion statewide school bond, that, if approved, would bring nearly $19 million to schools in Craven County.

Neighboring Jones County is still recovering as well. The governor says, "A lot of people have temporary housing here, but the key is to get people into permanent housing."

The Governor visited a home being rebuilt under the STEP, or sheltering and temporary power, program.

Cooper says, "We want to get to a point where we're completing 100 households a day. There's a federal deadline where we have to finish them all in the next couple of weeks."

The governor has said recovery will take several years, and this Thursday will mark 6 months since the hurricane hit.


Governor Roy Cooper is in Eastern Carolina today to check in on hurricane recovery.

This afternoon he visited James W. Smith Elementary School in Craven County before moving on to visit a home being rebuilt through the Sheltering and Temporary Essential Power program in Jones County.

The state program provides partial repairs at no cost to home-owners so they can live in their homes while longer-term repairs continue.