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Rubio Urges FEMA to Facilitate Cleanup of Hurricane Debris on Private Roads
Miami, FL – U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) today urged the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to facilitate the cleanup of debris on private roads in the wake of Hurricane Matthew. Several Florida counties have not been able to remove hurricane debris from private roads due to impractical FEMA policies, creating unsafe and unsanitary conditions for residents.
Prior to the hurricane, Rubio urged President Obama to conduct a comprehensive review of federal regulations and ensure Hurricane Matthew recovery efforts were not hindered.
The full text of Rubio’s letter is below:
October 27, 2016
The Honorable W. Craig Fugate
Federal Emergency Management Agency
500 C Street SW
Washington, D.C. 20472
Dear Administrator Fugate:
It has been more than two weeks since Hurricane Matthew hit Florida, and counties have not been able to clean up hurricane debris on private roads due to impractical Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) guidelines that threaten to revoke the counties’ eligibility for federal reimbursement. This has left our counties unable to address immediate threats to the health and safety of residents.
While I am respectful of FEMA’s many responsibilities and realize the road to recovery is a lengthy one, I am perplexed by the bureaucratic delay and unworkable guidelines required for debris collection on private roads. I trust you will agree it is neither efficient nor plausible to collect the signatures of tens of thousands of homeowners and renters for approval to pick up their hurricane debris. Instead, as residents continue their efforts to recover from this major hurricane, the piles of debris continue to create unsafe and unsanitary conditions.
Shortly before Hurricane Matthew impacted Florida, I wrote to President Obama asking that federal regulations be reviewed and “relaxed in order to facilitate hurricane relief efforts.” Debris collection on private roads is a prime example of why I raised the issue with the president then and you now. I respectfully request you work with the state of Florida to ensure debris collection on private roads is treated in the same manner as on other roads and in other communities.