JACKSONVILLE, Fla.-- The government wants to use your money to move one house to higher ground.
Dr. Iris Eisenberg lives in a home with a lot of problems. She keeps her furniture on the blocks to protect it from all the flood water. Her Riverside house sits too low to the ground, in a flood zone. So, when it rains, it pours into her home.
She's now going to get it fixed, but at taxpayers' expense. On Tuesday, the city council approved giving Dr. Eisenberg a FEMA grant for $453,000. We did some more digging and found her home is only assessed at $225,000. "This is on the top of it a crazy thing to do, but I have no options," said Dr. Eisenberg.
She realizes it's a lot of money. "I agree, but no options. Either worth zero nothing to pay city taxes on or we have to do this," said Dr. Eisenberg.
FEMA can't buy her home, and if it's not elevated, she says it's worthless.
So, we tried calling FEMA to see why spend this much money. They didn't call us back.
So, we called the emergency preparedness division's senior supervisor with the city. She works with these FEMA grants. We asked if there was any guarantee the home would still not flood. The simple answer is no. Laura D'Alisera wouldn't go on camera, but said the only guarantee is if water doesn't rise above 8 feet.
But D'Alisera says other Jacksonville properties received the same grant, to the tune of $5 million in taxpayer dollars since 2007. So while this project will cost taxpayers more than this home is worth, Dr. Eisenberg says she didn't have a choice. "I tried to find alternatives but there are none."
If this was not approved by council, we've learned the money would've been spent at another home in Florida.