Flood victims to finally receive funding for damaged homes


Reporter - Elizabeth Fields
Photojounalist - Mason Watkins

METROPOLIS, Ill.- The Metropolis City Council voted 6-2 Monday night to front the funding for houses flooded in 2011. Most have remained vacant for more than two years.  

Metropolis Mayor Bill McDaniel said he's confident the city will receive the funding through the Illinois Emergency Management Agency Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, so as a result, he would like to go ahead and purchase the homes and let the state and federal grants pay the city back. The small change would get families the funding they've been waiting for 60-90 days earlier.

"That's just a small part of what we can do for the people who have been hurt tremendously by this," said McDaniel.

There are 10 properties total and the motion passed limits the total price tag to $360,000.

Jonathon Fulgham's family owns two of the properties. the 26-year-old who also works at Local 6, said they never imagined the funding would take more than two years to show up. 

"It was definitely a trying time the waiting game," he said.

But he said it was worth the wait because they couldn't afford to make the necessary changes to the house to make it meet all of the requirements of city ordinance for homes in flood plains.

"We're grateful for the opportunity to be able to get the money, but there are other people as well who were in a far worse place who definitely deserve what they're finally hopefully getting," he said.

The properties, once bought out using the grant money will become the city's responsibility to maintain. The structures will be knocked down and the lots will remain green space.