Justice addresses long-term WV flood issues at press conference

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Gov. Jim Justice has called a news conference for Friday morning about long-term flood relief.

The governor’s press conference is to start at 9 a.m. Friday. He and Gen. James Hoyer of the West Virginia National Guard had said last week that they would likely provide a Friday update on the RISE flood recovery program.

Controversy has stirred over the past month over the Justice administration’s handling of Community Development Block Grants for disaster relief administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Questions have arisen over a contract for an outside consultant to manage the millions of dollars in grant money, the pace of West Virginia’s long-term flood relief and the effectiveness of communication among agencies and with the public.

Justice announced last week that Hoyer would be the point man on all aspects of long-term disaster relief. The announcement at the governor’s June 7 press conference was the first time the governor had discussed the controversy that had already swirled for a couple of weeks.

The governor announced on Thursday that he had asked for and received the resignation of Commerce Secretary Woody Thrasher, whose agency administered the long-term flood relief money from HUD.

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