An official of the tornado-devastated community of Washington says the city's rate of rebuilding uninhabitable homes is about 30 percent higher than the federal average.

Washington City Administrator Tim Gleason says the city has building permits issued for 80 percent of 800 homes left uninhabitable after last November's storms. He says the community is "blown away" by the high rate and has become even more tight-knit since the November 2013 storm.

Gleason said the central Illinois city was one of the fastest growing towns in the region before the destruction. He says it still is.

Gleason says the city is still working with small business owners to help them get back on their feet.

The (Peoria) Journal Starreports the tornado damage in Tazewell County has boosted the local construction and real estate industries.

Tasos Katopodis, Getty Images