“Every single day, my administration has fought to make hurricane recovery a top priority, and today we’re able to take another step forward for Florida communities impacted by recent hurricanes,” said DeSantis. “Our state has been devastated by Hurricanes Michael and Irma these past two years, but by working together, we’re rebuilding every community stronger than before. I’m proud of the work we’ve already accomplished on Hurricane recovery statewide, and I look forward to working closely with President Trump to implement this increased federal cost share. As we near the second anniversary of Hurricane Irma’s landfall, I’m grateful to our President for his support of Florida’s long-term recovery.”
The government allocated 75% of recovery costs associated with Hurricane Irma to local counties. The president increased it to 90% following Hurricane Michael, which devastated the Panhandle in October 2018.
While the process to apply for emergency funds is inefficient, DeSantis believes the president will sign off on this request.
“That 90 percent will represent about 150 million dollars in relief for communities affected by Hurricane Irma," said DeSantis.
In January, the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) implemented new procedures to accelerate FEMA reimbursements to communities impacted by hurricanes Irma, Matthew and Hermine. Previously, the Division required projects to be 100-percent validated before any funding was awarded. Under the new process, half of the funds are awarded when a project is 50-percent validated, while the Division continues to work with applicants to provide funding as projects continue to be validated. Additionally, for Hurricane Michael, FDEM put in place an expedited process to accelerate funding for Northwest Florida communities. Activating this process will get funds to affected communities more quickly by providing 50 percent of the estimated project costs upfront and requiring less initial review.
In total, since January 8, FDEM has awarded more than $766 million in recovery funding for Hurricanes Michael, Irma, Matthew and Hermine. Governor DeSantis has announced several major hurricane recovery awards, including:
- On April 9, Governor DeSantis announced that Collier County received $40.9 million for Hurricane Irma recovery. Find that announcement HERE.
- On April 19, Governor DeSantis announced that Bay County received $18.5 million for Hurricane Michael recovery. Find that announcement HERE.
- On June 4, Governor DeSantis announced that Miami-Dade County is receiving $78.1 million for Hurricane Irma recovery. Find that announcement HERE.
DeSantis made the announcement in Fort Myers and was joined by leaders across the state including Sens. Joe Gruters and Lizbeth Benacquisto, Reps. Dane Eagle and Byron Donalds, and FDEM Director Jared Moskowitz.
“Hurricane Irma was a once-in-a-lifetime storm – an absolutely massive hurricane that was bookended by Hurricanes Harvey and Maria,” said Moskowitz. “This combination of a vast storm, combined with the strain on available resources, left many Florida communities struggling to recover. With today’s announcement, many of these cities and counties will find much-needed relief in additional federal dollars, which is a huge win for Florida.”
To read the letter sent to the White House, click HERE.