Edwards finishes assessments for disaster declaration

By Joe Bennett

Edwards finishes assessments for disaster declaration

May 14, 2013 Updated May 14, 2013 at 2:58 PM CDT

EDWARDS, Ill. -- Residents in the community of Edwards spent the day going through final inspections and assessments to apply for federal flood assistance.

Peoria County Board member Brad Harding held an informational meeting for some of the residents whose homes were hit the worst.

If Edwards is declared a disaster area, residents could accept money to rebuild or possibly take a buy-out to relocate.

Harding says the final decision is important because the government cannot afford another disaster there.

"They are not going to want to help these people ever again,” Harding said. “So if these people choose to stay here in Edwards, which we want to keep the community together, but if they stay they need to realize that we are living in a totally different environment down the road for that next flood."

Harding believes President Obama could sign the declaration within three weeks.

In the meantime, Edwards residents will decide on the possible fate of the village founded in the mid-1800s.

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