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It was threatening to rain in the town of Clendenin as Mayor Kay Summers showed U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito around, highlighting the progress the town had made since the devastating floods inundated Elk River communities in June 2016.
Summers showed off some of the local economic development and tourism projects, and continued efforts to address lingering issues caused by the 2016 flood, including senior housing apartments, kayak rentals, Airbnbs and the Elk River Trail. Clendenin was one of the four hardest-hit towns during the 2016 flood.
“The flooding in 2016 devastated Clendenin and the surrounding area, and it continues to impact the way businesses and the local economy function today,” Capito said. “Fortunately, Mayor Summers has remained laser-focused on utilizing our state’s natural resources and beauty, such as the Elk River, to spur economic development and bring both visitors and business to the local community.”
Capito noted that she did not vote for the American Rescue Plan, but said she thinks the monies coming to the state would be available to help Clendenin continue rebuilding and removing dilapidated homes and other buildings.
Summers said that there are problems still with residents getting money they are owed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
“For us to get approved for anything with FEMA, it takes six or eight months,” she said.
One of the biggest remaining projects is the tear down and removal of the old Clendenin Elementary School. Summers said she expects that to happen soon.
“I deeply appreciate Senator Capito’s visit to Clendenin today to see how far we’ve come,” Mayor Summers said. “Her continued support is vital as we work to make Clendenin a vibrant town once again.”