Federal Law Enforcement Investigating The 2016 Floods Disaster Relief

CHARLESTON, WV (WOAY) – United States Attorney Mike Stuart provided the following statement regarding a federal investigation into the 2016 floods disaster relief:

“The deadly 2016 floods were a seminal event for West Virginia. Too many of our precious citizens lost their lives. Many other lives were terribly impacted. Critical infrastructure including roads, bridges, and water systems were destroyed or significantly interrupted. And too many West Virginians lost their most critical personal asset – their homes.  Many lives were literally turned upside down.  To this day, the future remains uncertain for too many of our friends and neighbors.

Post-disaster, the federal government committed millions of taxpayer dollars to disaster relief for recovery with the intent that the assistance would help rebuild lives and rebuild communities.  Critical federal resources through FEMA and the Department of Housing and Urban Development are essential to the rebuilding process and must be used wisely, timely and legally.

Every available dollar for disaster relief must be spent on disaster relief.  Diversion, fraud, corruption or delay cannot and will not be tolerated.

Desperate communities and West Virginians depend on critical, limited dollars to assist in recovery.  Desperate communities and West Virginians need certainty that in a future disaster intended assistance will be delivered timely and spent properly.  West Virginians need to be reassured that federal law enforcement is now investigating this matter.  Rest assured, my office is working with appropriate federal agencies to investigate the issues of disaster relief, and use of federal funds related to the historic 2016 floods and I can assure our citizens that any party that abused their position of authority, violated the public trust, or misused taxpayer dollars will be held accountable, if warranted.”

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Tyler Barker is currently the News Director and Digital Content Manager for WOAY-TV. He was promoted to this job in Mid-November. He still will fill in on weather from time to time. You can follow Tyler on Facebook and Twitter @wxtylerb. Have any news tips or weather questions? Email him at tbarker@woay.com