Additional $12.8 million approved for Hurricane Michael expenses

Northwest Florida

This photo shows devastation from Hurricane Michael in this aerial photo over Mexico Beach, Fla., Friday, Oct. 12, 2018. Blocks and blocks of homes were demolished, reduced to piles of splintered lumber or mere concrete slabs, by the most powerful hurricane to hit the continental U.S. in nearly 50 years. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WKRG) — FEMA approved two projects ($7,859,538 and $4,928,975) for a total of $12,788,513 for the state of Florida to reimburse Leon County for debris removal costs following Hurricane Michael. Disaster-generated debris posed a threat to public health, safety, natural resources, and tourism.

The county was previously awarded nearly $7.6 million for emergency debris cleanup activities in April 2019. To date, more than $20 million has been approved for the county’s debris-related expenses.

The grants are funded by FEMA’s Public Assistance program, an essential source of funding for communities recovering from a federally declared disaster or emergency. Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) works with FEMA during all phases of the PA program and reviews projects prior to FEMA final approval. Applicants work directly with FEMA to develop projects and scopes of work. FEMA obligates funding for projects after final approval. Once projects are obligated by FEMA, FDEM works closely with applicants to finalize grants and begin making payments. FDEM has implemented new procedures designed to ensure grant funding is provided to local communities as quickly as possible.

FEMA’s Public Assistance program provides grants to state, tribal and local governments, and certain private nonprofit organizations, including houses of worship, so communities can quickly respond to and recover from major disasters or emergencies.

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