ReBuild NC

boards and columns hold up a carport while construction materials, such as long boards are strewn all over the ground

ReBuild NC warned hurricane survivor he could have to repay all of his benefits, as much as $250K

BY: - October 17, 2023

This is part of a series of stories about financial waste at ReBuild NC. Vernon Harrell told them to look in the attic.  His family home in Kinston did not flood in Hurricane Matthew, but copious amounts of rain from the historic storm leaked through the roof. Please look in the attic, Harrell told the […]

a cartoon shows a hurricane recovery official asleep at their desk

Disastrous disaster relief

BY: - October 16, 2023

A photo of Hal Lowder, the emergency management director for the Town of Whiteville, in Columbus County. He is a 62-year-old white man with snow-white hair and a mustache. He's wearing a pine green uniform. On his desk sit emergency radios, pens, a black prayer book, and a computer. The computer monitor has small paper ghosts on it, made by his daughter. (Photo: Lisa Sorg)

Hurricane survivor to ReBuild NC: “Are we just a number? Is anybody out there a human being?”

BY: - October 16, 2023

This is a second story in a series about financial waste at ReBuild NC, also known as the NC Office of Recovery and Resiliency. Hal Lowder’s office in Whiteville City Hall is crammed with a collection of silver vintage fire extinguishers, a stack of Justin’s cowboy hats, an array of family photos and a simple […]

A broken window on a home damaged by Hurricane Matthew

While 3,100 hurricane survivors lack permanent homes, ReBuild NC employees earn big salaries

BY: - October 12, 2023

This is the first in a series of stories about waste at the N.C. Office of Recovery and Resiliency, also known as ReBuild NC. At a tense legislative oversight hearing in September 2022, desperate homeowners, lawmakers and emergency management experts lambasted ReBuild NC about North Carolina’s failed hurricane recovery program. “Based on what I’ve heard […]

a modular home being elevated

ReBuild NC must increase pace of home completions or risk losing federal disaster funding

BY: - April 25, 2023

ReBuild NC’s homeowner recovery program has finished only 25% of the houses damaged by Hurricane Matthews and Florence, a pace that, if uncorrected, could jeopardize its federal funding. Roughly 4,700 applicants have been approved for new or rehabbed homes, state data show. Of those, just 1,118 are finished. Robeson County’s program accounts for 201 of those […]

Senate bill targets ReBuild NC to get disaster relief program on track

BY: - April 5, 2023

Displaced Hurricane survivors could return home more quickly if a new Senate bill aimed at ReBuild NC becomes law. Under Senate Bill 438, the state’s most vulnerable homeowners would get priority under ReBuild NC’s disaster relief program for the reconstruction or rehabs of their storm-damaged homes: People over age 62 Low-income families Families with children […]

flooded houses

ReBuild NC defends Rescue Construction, while fining company for delays in hurricane recovery

BY: - April 3, 2023

For the third time, hurricane survivors arrived at the state legislature – some sick, others frail, and all of them tired of living in motels. For the third time, lawmakers on a government oversight committee interrogated ReBuild NC Director Laura Hogshead, responsible for mismanaging the disaster recovery program. And for the third time, little substantive came […]

Hillside High School students

Weekend reads: High schoolers take a stand against gun violence, North Carolina’s chronic public employee shortage, and NC environmental, public health groups get their day in court

BY: - February 26, 2023

In this issue: 1. Durham high school students plead with state leaders for action to combat gun violence “Thoughts and prayers” are no longer enough to protect children from gun violence, says Durham Hillside High School Principal William Logan. Gunviolence proliferates, Logan said, because guns are too readily available, and lawmakers are unwilling to pass […]

ReBuild NC’s modular home program still faltering; hurricane survivors now receiving different housing types

BY: - February 22, 2023

ReBuild NC’s highly touted modular home program, which state officials have claimed would be the fastest way to get hurricane survivors out of motels and into permanent housing, continues to falter, according to state data. Numbers provided by ReBuild NC to Policy Watch this week show that Rescue Construction Solutions has built 20 modular homes […]

Plastics, natural gas and substation attacks: environmental bills to watch this week

BY: - February 20, 2023

With Medicaid, guns and anti-LGBT legislation consuming lawmakers’ time, only a few environmental bills have been introduced this session. The pace usually picks up — a gut-and-amend bill here, an ambush provision there — so enjoy the relative quiet while you can. That said, here are several bills worth watching this week as they emerge […]

In newly created job, Richard Trumper will try to get ailing ReBuild NC disaster recovery program back on track

BY: - January 20, 2023

Richard Trumper, director of disaster recovery at the Office of State Budget and Management, will move to the NC Department of Public Safety as the senior advisor for disaster recovery, DPS announced today. He was appointed to the newly created position by DPS Secretary Eddie Buffaloe, Jr. His first day will be Feb. 1. “In […]