PEARLINGTON — Mississippi and federal officials have put a priority on buying out 111 flood prone properties in the town of Pearlington.
Pearlington is located in Hancock County along the Mississippi-Louisiana state line.
Mississippi Emergency Management Agency director Robert Latham and other officials met last Tuesday with the Hancock County Board of Supervisors to discuss the Pearlington buyout.
The Sea Coast Echo reports MEMA had originally indicated it would dedicate $10 million for the project; however, the state moved $6 million to other projects last year because the buyout was not moving fast enough.
“What I don’t want is to be here in 12 months in the same place,” Latham said. “I feel confident that I can pull the $6 million back. Anything above that, we will have to scrape and scrap.”
The buyout would be voluntary.
The estimated cost associated with buying out the 111 homes is about $15.1 million, officials said. That number may decrease when offers are made to the property owners. The county is only allowed to offer property owners the fair market value of the property.
Hancock County officials say about 73 homes in Pearlington were damaged last month during Hurricane Isaac. They say 30 of those homes are on the buyout list.