Magoffin County flood victims feel overlooked

By: Michel Mason Email
By: Michel Mason Email

Flood victims in four Eastern Kentucky counties are receiving individual disaster assistance from FEMA, but that's not the case for people in Magoffin County, at least for now.

Magoffin County is only eligible to get help from FEMA to repair damaged roads or public buildings and not individual homes.

County leaders requested a reassessment to make sure people get the help they need.

Flood victims there are stunned, and many, like Sherry Watson can't help but feel forgotten.

"There's some reason, I don't know if it's political or what it is, but there's a reason why we're not getting it," said Watson.

Her home is still in shambles nearly a month after flooding hit the Royalton area.

"We're just like anybody else. We'd like to have a clean place to go. We'd like to have some help," added Watson.

She says insurance will cover some of what she lost, but knows some of her neighbors are not

Judge Executive Charles Hardin says more than 100 homes are damaged and some are destroyed.

"In a community that has all the needs we have in Magoffin County, we certainly deserve and need some help," said Judge Hardin.

To qualify for individual aid, Hardin says the county had to prove $50,000 in damage to 25 homes. He was confident it would get that help the first time around.

"We will not quit trying until we are told to go away, and we have not been told to go away yet," added Hardin.

FEMA did let Watson register just in case the decision is reversed, but told her to call state emergency management officials.

"The more people that calls in, the better off we will be as far as help goes," added Watson.

She's among many who are refusing to back down.

Hardin says the additional damage information collected today will be reported during a conference call with state emergency officials tomorrow.


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  • by teresa Location: royalton on Jun 2, 2009 at 08:07 PM
    im one of the flood victims in royalton.and i have only lived in that area for 2 years and i have lost my home. i tried to stay in it. but when you get up to send your child to school and you fall threw the floors its time to get out. the floors are fallin in and the walls are giving way and now the celling is falling in also. i did not no it flooded where i was. theyre is alot of us needs help. this is the only home ive ever owned and now my son and i have nothing. the black mold has taken over and theres no way that we can afford to fix or replace it.
  • by DUH on Jun 2, 2009 at 05:07 PM
    Be sure and vote for another democratic governor and president next election. DUH
  • by HippieChick Location: Paintsville on Jun 2, 2009 at 11:32 AM
    The reason Magoffin only qualified for FEMA Public Assistance is because probably well over 80% of the homes that were flooded in the county are in a flood plain! I am not trying to be mean here but you can't expect an agency to pay for homes that are always flooded or in danger of being flooded, FEMA assitance is for folks who happened to be victims of freak flooding... Go to the courthouse and check your records, if you property was EVER at one point labeled in a flood plain you are out of luck... Believe me I feel your pain, I lost everything in the Memorial day flood a few years ago, and FEMA didn't help me at all because they went back so many years and found the flood plain info in our records and we knew nothing about it.....
  • by Mollie Location: Magoffin on Jun 2, 2009 at 08:40 AM
    I feel we should be treated equal,people has suffered major from this diaster,lost almosy everything if not everything.I hope everyone here in our community stands together and fights for what is right.We deserve it just the same as the other counties.God Bless
  • by Brandee Location: Magoffin County on Jun 2, 2009 at 08:19 AM
    I dont think the election should play a role in this we are American Citizens just like anywhere else, and we are good people that need assistance I think it is a shame we were overlooked. Just pray something will happen of the families who need help.
  • by James Location: Magoffin on Jun 2, 2009 at 05:23 AM
    Maybe Obama's FEMA thinks Magoffin County should turn to Hillary for help since so many in this county supported her over Candidate Obama. Remember the sweet little write up LA Times had over this deal? Could it be they see it as what goes around comes around and they welcome us to experience Barack's Katrina!
  • by Anonymous on Jun 1, 2009 at 07:48 PM
    this is so stupid that the state cant do their jobs due to fema its not the states fault and i for one will not back down on this
  • by j on Jun 1, 2009 at 05:59 PM
    How could you just help some & not all?

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