Area leaders asking federal officials for aid, help with infrastructure improvements after Florence

Updated: Oct. 29, 2018 at 5:23 PM EDT
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WASHINGTON, DC (WECT) - Leaders from several Southeastern North Carolina municipalities are in the nation’s capital this week advocating for additional resources and support from the federal government in the wake of Hurricane Florence.

“I think that we’re united in saying we don’t want the federal government to lose sight of the fact that we’re going to be in recovery for probably two years, if not more,” Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo said during a Skype interview with WECT.

Saffo said his priorities in Washington will be securing additional housing assistance for those displaced by the storm, as well as financial assistance for cities and towns that had damage to public buildings.

Additionally, Saffo said, he wants to get the ball rolling with the Federal Highway Administration and other agencies to shore up Interstate 40, so Wilmington and the surrounding area are not cut off after future storms.

“We need to have that. Two times now in 24 months to be cut off from the world is unacceptable," Saffo said, "and we’ve got to make certain that we have the ear of the federal highway administration and our elected officials in Washington.”

Surf City Mayor Doug Medlin said his main goal is getting help with beach renourishment. Medlin said the town saw 10 feet of tidal storm surge, and as a result its dunes were destroyed. Surf City has been waiting for beach renourishment funding for 15 years, he said, and he hopes now the town can finally get the help it needs.

The leaders will be in DC Oct. 29-30.

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