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  • Madison Street Strategies

News 104.5: FEMA Awards Millions to Help Cover Hurricane Irma Related Expenses in NE Florida

Jacksonville, FL -  As we near the two year anniversary of Hurricane Irma, we've learned the City of Jacksonville, as well as Clay County, are still waiting to be fully reimbursed by FEMA. 

FEMA has now approved a little more than $1.7 million for the state of Florida to help Jacksonville cover the costs of rebuilding dunes that were damaged by Irma along a 7-and-a-half mile stretch of beach. The money is also designated to help cover the cost of planting more than a quarter million dune plants, primarily sea oats. 

A city spokesperson tell us the state has received the money for the dunes project and is currently in the review process, so they are not able to comment on how much Jacksonville will actually be getting. 

In terms of the big picture, the city says Irma caused approximately $72.5 million in damage, which includes things like roads and bridges, parks, as well as debris, and emergency protective measures. To date, the city says it's received roughly $1.2 million from FEMA and the state toward reimbursement. We're told that the money received goes back into the city's general fund, which means it can go toward other city needs, like policing and drainage. 

For the $72.5 million in total damage, the city says FEMA can pay up to 100% of the cost on certain projects, but typically provides 75% of the requested amount, while the state adds 12.5%. 

As for Clay County, FEMA has now approved nearly $2 million for the state to help the county cover the costs of debris removal and disposal in the weeks following Irma. 

Just like the City of Jacksonville award money, this money will also need to be reviewed by the state, which could change the total amount that the county ultimately gets. 

A county spokesperson says they have been reimbursed roughly $751,000 to date for debris removal and disposal, but spent about $6.9 million. 

The total cost of Irma for Clay County ended up being over $8.6 million, according to the county, with total reimbursement received so far at approximately $1.5 million. 

Like the city, the money received by the county will go back into their general revenue fund.

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