The Town of Clendenin is having big problems getting projects done to repair damage from the 2016 floods. Mayor Clendenin says she’s been reaching out to the state for months to get help, but her requests have fallen on deaf ears.
Clendenin’s Town Hall and Community Center may look fine, but there is still major work to be done.
“The work has been completed to the point that we can complete it, at this point. But going back to the original disaster and the original state of the buildings, there are some issues that need to be addressed,” Mayor Shana Clendenin told 13 News.
Clendenin was elected in July 2017 and by October she started realizing there were issues with the FEMA Project Worksheets. So she reached out to the West Virginia Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (DMAPS) for help.
“My whole goal, beginning into this is I need to reach out to my state because they can help me make sure that these things are correct. That’s what I was looking for, was guideness and reassurance that when I sign a document it is correct,” Mayor Clendenin explained.
Multiple phone calls, emails and meetings with WVDMAPS staff got her nowhere. The WVDMAPS staff asked her to sign off on the Worksheets to close them out. But she’s worried signing to close-out the project will leave her town on the hook to pay money back.
“We want to make sure that the people of Clendenin, who have suffered so much, not even in Clendenin but statewide, through the 2016 floods, that there’s not another issue like RISE,” Mayor Clendenin added.
So we asked WVDMAPS Director Jimmy Gianato why there has been a hold up. He had this to say at a press conference on June 7th, “not that I’m aware of. What information we saw is FEMA has written all the project worksheets. There were some awards made, they’ve got to work with the mayor, apparently they’ve not put out some contracts.”
Clendenin said she’s still waiting for a call back from Gianato’s office, and she’s fed up. So she delivered a letter to Governor Jim Justice and lawmakers, calling for action.
You can see Mayor Clendenin’s letter here: