Six months of battling non-stop flooding in the South Delta, locals are finally seeing water levels slightly recede bringing them to the next challenge how can they recover their losses?
It’s important to first note that though the backwater flood is draining a little each day since the Steele Bayou gates opened, there’s still a long way to go before this flood is gone. But folks plan to hold a meeting with officials to learn their options in the future for resources and recovery.
Working around the clock non-stop since February to save their homes and what’s left of their livelihoods, a simple meeting dedicated to recovering is big relief for those in the Delta.
“Here we are six months later and there was never a meeting just titled relief and recovery,” Holly Bluff farmer Smith Stoner said. “So that is something that shows promise to the end.”
It will happen Thursday at 5:30 p.m. in the First Baptist Church of Holly Bluff where many speakers from the state and federal government will update those impacted by this flood and their options to get help.
“So we would bring some officials from the State Emergency Management, from Federal Emergency Management, and from the Levee Board,” Yazoo EMA Director Jack Willingham told us.
“We’re going to have officials in here from the power companies, we’re going to have officials from mental health groups to tell the people what to expect in the recovery process as it goes.”
We traveled out to some of the hardest hit areas in the wetlands to see what questions they might have.
“To understand and know what resources are available and apply those resources,” Holly Bluff farmer Clay Adcock said. “And make best use of those resources for the recovery process.”
“How will they help our local economy get back on our feet?” Stoner asked. “What’s the timeframe on it, how long will it take to get our roads and bridges back in shape? You know will crews want to come in and support local business when they’re helping?”
Pastors and psychiatrists will be in attendance to assist anyone battling mental illness or anxiety brought by this flooding.
“Having to boat into their homes, having to live on their own island, it’s really been a big stress to them,” Stoner continued.
Despite being put on and held in holly bluff organizers encourage everyone across the delta impacted by the flood to attend and get your voices heard.
A not so fun fact about the delta backwater flood is theirs’s still over 540,000 acres of farmland and yards underwater which is more than the entire cities of New York, Chicago, and Miami combined.