‘It’s a good day’: HDA breaks ground on another home on higher ground

Weekday broadcast of WYMT Mountain News at 5:30
Published: Nov. 14, 2023 at 3:03 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 14, 2023 at 5:50 PM EST
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Weekday broadcast of WYMT Mountain News First at Four

PERRY COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Efforts to rebuild continue following the July 2022 flood.

Last month, Governor Andy Beshear announced $13.5 million in funding from the Rural Housing Trust Fund for non-profits in Eastern Kentucky who have made efforts to rebuild.

The Housing Development Alliance received $2.5 million of the funding. Leaders said the money will help build 17 homes and repair 15 others.

On Tuesday, HDA and other state and local officials broke ground on the first home being built with the funding.

“What we’ve been saying at all of these events is it’s a good day. It is actually a really really good day because today we are celebrating starting a home for Melissa and her daughters and their husky,” said Scott McReynolds, the Executive Director of HDA.

Melissa Neace and her daughters are moving into the home, and Melissa said it was a very exciting day for her family.

“We’re in a little camper right now with the Kentucky Emergency Management and I am very appreciative to have the place to stay, you know the roof over our heads. But this is going to be absolutely wonderful. To have like I said a big kitchen to cook in, your own bedroom and space. That is what I look forward to the most,” said Neace.

Senator Brandon Smith was also at the event, and he said it is days like Tuesday that continue to prove Kentucky is going to build back stronger.

“The flood that tried to flatten us helped us rise because our string was these wonderful groups that we have held on to us and did not let us get blown away. So, sometimes the resistance that wants to destroy you can actually turn to be the thing that is going to make this an incredible subdivision with families and voices and echos a much better time than what we just came through,” he said.

Lieutenant Governor Jacqueline Coleman was at the groundbreaking. She said the flood brought Kentuckians together on both sides of the aisle.

“You know the biggest problems that we face don’t care what your political beliefs are. All that matters is that you show up for people no questions asked and do the work of helping make their lives better. Melissa you’re worth it. Your family is worth it. Showing up today and being able to celebrate this progress with you. I couldn’t think of a better way to spend a beautiful day in Eastern Kentucky,” she said.

The Neace family is scheduled to move into their new home in the spring of 2024.