TYLER COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Just four months ago, Hurricane Harvey swept across Texas. In the days that followed, hundreds of flood victims returned to find their homes damaged or destroyed.
On Monday, as part of the recovery efforts, the Tyler County Commissioner's Court approved temporary guidelines for those living in the flood-plain areas.
"I think people being around their neighbors, being around their support system, it's just makes for an easier recovery," said Ken Jobe, the Tyler County Emergency Management Coordinator. "If you're trying to manage rebuilding your house from a hotel room maybe 15 or 20 miles away from where you live, I just don't think it's a good practice."
Jobe said more than 200 homes were damaged in just Tyler County alone.
The Tyler County Commissioner's Court approved a court order to allow those affected by Harvey to put temporary housing, such as a mobile home or travel trailer, onto properties in flood prone areas while people rebuild for permanent housing.
County Judge Jacques Blanchette said this extension of relief will help encourage residents in the recovery process.
"They have been put into a very, very challenging situation because of this natural disaster. Why not express that in the form of what we can do," Blanchette said. "There some things we can't do, but this is something we can do."
Similar court orders are also taking place in counties that are part of the Deep East Texas Council of Governments that were also impacted by the August hurricane. Those include Polk, Jasper, Newton, Sabine, and San Jacinto Counties.
"If your house was not on piers before, to rebuild and qualify for National Flood Insurance, you have to bring it to that level of two foot above flood plain," Jobe said. "So this allows people to stay on their property in their temporary housing until that's done."
The temporary guidelines will allow residents 18 months since the day of the declaration to bring their property to code. Disaster declaration was made on August 25.
Blanchette recommends contacting the FEMA representative and the Emergency Management Coordinator for further assistance.