Housing will be top priority for hurricane task force

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Next step in Hurricane Matthew Recovery Plan will involve a Nov. 1 meeting.

The worst is over, and now many still struggling in Hurricane Matthew's aftermath are trying to pick up the pieces. The Governor's newly created Hurricane Recovery Task Force is getting to work to help bring relief to those affected most.

Gov. Pat McCrory's Chief of Staff Thomas Stith will head up the leadership along with Steve Wordsworth who will represent the business community. Anne Faircloth of AT&T will bring in her experience leading the North Carolina utility company. From there, the three will guide the team on how to raise money through the NC Disaster Relief Fund, rebuild many of the roads and towns washed out by Matthew, all while putting together a plan for how our legislature will respond.

"The Governor's vision is to have a very comprehensive committee that engages people not only throughout Eastern North Carolina but North Carolina in general. The storm's main impact was in the East but it impacts our state as a whole," Stith said.

The road to recovery is personal for Stith as he's an Eastern North Carolina native. His thoughts remain with those forced from their homes.

COMPLETE COVERAGE OF HURRICANE MATTHEW HERE

"I consider myself a son of the East," Stith said. "My family is from Edgecombe County so I have a personal interest in rebuilding our region; not that it's only stabilized but to see that it grows."

Stith says fixing the housing crisis is top of mind but repairing the economic damage left behind by Matthew will take years.

"If you remember the last time we had a similar storm, which was in 1999 with Hurricane Floyd, it took several years to recover and rebuild," Stith said.

The first meeting for the task force will take place Nov. 1. During the meeting, Stith will announce the rest of the committee members.

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