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Rubio Demands Action From FEMA On Panhandle Flood Assistance

Oct 20, 2014 | Press Releases

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) today demanded action from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) regarding reimbursements for flood recovery projects completed by local governments in Northwest Florida.

“Nearly six months have passed since these storms devastated Northwest Florida and the community has overcome many of the challenges that have followed,” wrote Rubio. “Thirty-seven of the 74 FEMA approved projects have been completed by local governments, however it has come to my attention that FEMA has not reimbursed the communities for these approved expenditures.

“The city of Pensacola, which was hit especially hard by the storms, has spent nearly $3.2 million on these projects and is still waiting for reimbursement from FEMA,” added Rubio. “I respectfully ask for an update on the 74 approved projects associated with the April storms in Northwest Florida and an explanation for the delayed reimbursements for the 37 projects that have already been completed.”

A PDF of the letter is available here. The full text is below:

October 20, 2014

Mr. W. Craig Fugate
Administrator
Federal Emergency Management Agency
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
500 C Street S.W.
Washington, DC 20472

Administrator Fugate,

I write you today regarding the status of FEMA reimbursement for several approved projects in Northwest Florida. It is my understanding that FEMA has not reimbursed the local municipalities impacted by flooding which occurred earlier this year.

As you know, in late April, Northwest Florida experienced historic storms with some areas seeing more than two feet of rain. The rainfall resulted in massive flooding with several roads and bridges being washed away and subsequently FEMA was brought in to assess the damage. FEMA officials identified 74 projects that qualified for federal assistance and the affected local governments initiated work on those projects immediately following the storm. 

Nearly six months have passed since these storms devastated Northwest Florida and the community has overcome many of the challenges that have followed. Thirty-seven of the 74 FEMA approved projects have been completed by local governments, however it has come to my attention that FEMA has not reimbursed the communities for these approved expenditures. The city of Pensacola, which was hit especially hard by the storms, has spent nearly $3.2 million on these projects and is still waiting for reimbursement from FEMA.

I respectfully ask for an update on the 74 approved projects associated with the April storms in Northwest Florida and an explanation for the delayed reimbursements for the 37 projects that have already been completed. I look forward to your timely response.

Sincerely,

Marco Rubio
United States Senator