Perdue promises support to victims

Published 12:56 am Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Gov. Beverly Perdue (left) listens as Beaufort County Sheriff Alan Jordan (right) and interim County Manager Jim Chrisman discuss damage caused by Hurricane Irene on Saturday. (WDN Photo/Christ Prokos)

FEMA and state resources will help state recover

Gov. Beverly Perdue visited the Beaufort County Emergency Operations Center in Washington on Monday afternoon for an up-close assessment of the damage caused by Hurricane Irene on Saturday.

U.S. Rep. G.K. Butterfield and state Sen. Stan White accompanied the governor as she met with interim Beaufort County Manager Jim Chrisman and several county and Washington officials.

“We have in place, already, the authorization from the president that allows you to already spend money on infrastructure,” Perdue told the officials. “You can count on that. That’s done, and the money’s going to be there.

“I know it’s been hard, and that’s why we’re here today. I want you to know that we understand how hard this is, and we understand the devastation.”

The delegation spent the morning in Rocky Mount and Windsor before coming to Washington. They were scheduled to end the day in Bayboro.

“The devastation is enormous, but I want you to know that FEMA stands ready to bring the resources into this community,” Butterfield said. “The resources will be very significant. There will be assets that can help families as well to help the local government with its cleanup procedures.”

Perdue was able to provide two cutting crews from the N.C. Forestry Service, building inspectors from the western part of the state, a tractor-trailer filled with MREs (meals ready to eat) and bottled water, as well as a division of National Guard troops to help distribute the water.

“We’re extremely grateful that (Perdue) came down to assess the damage in Beaufort County, and we’re really appreciative of the resources that she was able to provide for us,” Chrisman said.

On its way to Bayboro, the Perdue delegation was scheduled to fly over Pamlico Beach and the south side of the Pamlico River, including Aurora.

Perdue concluded her visit to Beaufort County with words of praise and hope.

“I can only imagine how hard these last three days have been from citizens, from elected officials, from the folks who work for the county and the city who make it happen, from all these volunteers, our first responders. You do have a dynamite team here. and we’re better for that.

“The good news is we’re at the point now we can talk about bouncing back. We’re putting the resources on the ground, and that’s the best thing about North Carolina. None of us hang our heads and say ‘Oh, we’re defeated.’ We all pick ourselves up from our bootstraps and go on, and we’ll do that as a team together.”

A high-definition video of Perdue’s entire press briefing can be viewed at