Some Hurricane Matthew victims finally seeing relief funds

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— Nearly three years after Hurricane Matthew ripped through North Carolina, some homeowners are finally getting financial relief.

Albert Pearce has been living a nightmare ever since Hurricane Matthew struck in 2015 and severely damaged his home.

“The roof came off and the water rained probably for about 22 hours in my house,” he said. “Twenty-two straight hours.”

Since the storm., Pearce said he has pumped in about $35,000 into his property in order to make repairs.

But on Wednesday, he signed paper to get a $25,000 check to reimburse him for the work he’s already done.

The money is part of the state’s Community Development Block Grant for Hurricane Matthew victims.

Pearce is the first homeowner in Cumberland County to receive money that he says he has waited for nearly three years.

Other homeowners in his neighborhood who also suffered Hurricane Florence damage say they hope they won’t have to wait as long to get their checks.

“The state has actually stood up a North Carolina office of Resiliency and Recovery so that we can tackle not just Florence but other future storms,” said Cindy Blot, community development director for Fayetteville.

In addition to the $25,000 reimbursement check, Pearce is getting about $11,000 of work performed by a contractor to make his house livable once again. It is part of fund that the City of Fayetteville has been trying to get from the state to homeowners for quite some time.