Nearly one year after flood waters ravaged south Louisiana, one flood victim is getting ready to go home. Lillie Gumm of Baton Rouge was one of the first people to complete the flood recovery survey. Her home will be the third to be completed through the state’s homeowner assistance program, which she says turned out to be even better than she expected.
“They work very rapidly. The crew that came in with CORE, they were so compassionate it brought tears to my eyes because they were sensitive to what I had gone through,” Gumm said.
Gumm’s home is about 90 percent complete, after taking on three to four feet of water last year. She is one of 37,000 flood victims to complete the online survey at restore.la.gov, which gets the ball rolling on helping flooded homeowners repair their homes. She says throughout this ordeal, she has learned to be patient.
“You have to be patient and wait your turn. It might seem like it’s taking forever, but it didn’t take forever. Just in about three weeks my house has been completely turned around,” Gumm said.
Gumm says the whole process took about three months from start to finish. Gumm is currently staying in a FEMA mobile home while repairs wrap up on her home. She encourages everyone impacted by the flood to complete the survey without delay.
“You have to put in your personal information, and there’s some questions that’s common in general, but it’s very easy. It only took me about 10 or 15 minutes to go through the survey,” Gumm said.
Money from the homeowner assistance program, which was funded by Congress, is first going to the elderly, disabled and low-income individuals, and the state is beginning to expand the program to all income levels in the most impacted parishes.