Texas governor describes Harvey rescue efforts, damage

Gov. Greg Abbott told "GMA" how the state is planning to deal with damages from Harvey and take care of homeowners who do not have flood insurance.
3:41 | 09/01/17

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Transcript for Texas governor describes Harvey rescue efforts, damage
Now to Texas governor Greg Abbott. He joins us from Austin, Texas. You know that the thoughts and prayers of the nation are with you and everyone there in the state of Texas. We've been talking with the mayor in Houston and he says that that city, the mayor says the city is mostly dry. But there's great concern that now that the floodwater is receding that it's going to reveal the extent of the damage. Are you getting a better gauge of that extent of damage? We are and first of all we do appreciate the thoughts and prayers of people across the country and, in fact, across the world and the support that we've seen galvanized because of this horrific flooding and hurricane has really transformed the state and our nation as the waters recede in Houston, of course, they're still riding in Beaumont so we are having to first of all deal with the aftermath of the receding waters in Houston while also deal with the emergency of rescuing people in the Beaumont, Texas, area. But this is going to be a massive, massive cleanup process. It's going to be far larger in scope than Katrina was because the geographic area covered was far larger and people need to understand this is not going to be a short-term project. This is going to be a multi--year project for Texas to be able to dig out of this catastrophe. And there are many, governor, that are now in shelters, some 30,000 and counting that are in shelters and having to do move around and they want to get back to their homes and when they get back they may be unsalvageable but also knowing that about 80% in the hardest hit areas do not have flood insurance, so what do you say to those families who are trying to get back home, they know their hopes may not be there and they don't have the flood insurance, what can they expect? How can they be helped? Sure, they can expect help from FEMA. FEMA has been very aggressive in making sure we'll have a close collaboration and swift activation to make sure we will be able to get these people from the evacuation facilities to temporary facilities to permanent facilities. And so this has been the most impressive response to a catastrophe we've seen, people can expect us to continue that very swift effort. And we are seeing that some of the schools are saying they're going to be re-opening in a couple of weeks, just a couple of weeks behind schedule and having grown up in the Mississippi gulf coast, I remember I was like 8 years old after hurricane Camille and it's so important to get the schools back open. People are just craving normalcy and I know that it's a real balancing act and what you're trying to do, governor. Well, it is. And getting back to school is one of the most important things and once people start returning to school, people will feel that sense of normalcy. We've received waivers from the U.S. Department of education and the state of Texas has triggered those to make sure that process will be more seamless and more easily achieved but returning to school, returning to work, returning to normalcy, you will begin to see that pick up but during that process, we will be working swiftly to try to normalize the situation, not just in Houston, not just in Beaumont, but where the hurricane originally hit, back near the Corpus Christi area. Yes, it's such an extensive storm as you said. There's so many people coming to your aid and there's somebody with Texas ties, you're going to be back with us later in our:00 hour and a major contribution because as you said, this is years in the making and the recovery effort and so many people are helping and we'll see you a little bit later this morning, governor, but thank you. Thank you so much. Of course. Dan. You know as a gulf resident that normalcy takes a while. It certainly does. Let's talk about the

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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