- President Joe Biden approved a major disaster declaration for Florida in response to the hurricane’s impact.
- Affected counties including Citrus, Dixie, Hamilton, Lafayette, Levy, Suwannee, and Taylor will receive federal funding for assistance.
- The declaration covers temporary housing, home repairs, low-cost loans, and funding for debris removal and emergency measures; Biden plans to visit the affected areas.
The White House announced on Thursday afternoon that President Joe Biden approved of Florida’s request for a major disaster declaration. The designation makes Federal funding available to affected individuals in afflicted counties.
The motion encompasses a range of affected counties, including Citrus, Dixie, Hamilton, Lafayette, Levy, Suwannee, and Taylor, and serves to expedite assistance to those reeling from the hurricane’s path of damage.
The provisions also provide grants designed to aid temporary housing and home repairs, as well as low-cost loans aimed at bridging the gap for property losses not covered by insurance.
Furthermore, federal funding has been earmarked for State, tribal, and eligible local governments, in addition to select nonprofit organizations. The funding is designated to cover expenses related to debris removal and emergency protective measures.
Notably, a specific 30-day window, at the State’s discretion within the initial 120 days following the disaster, offers full coverage of eligible costs for debris removal and emergency protective measures in the aforementioned counties. Moreover, the availability of federal funds extends to collaborative hazard mitigation endeavors statewide, with a shared cost approach ensuring the implementation of effective preventive measures.
“The administration is committed to supporting all the communities impacted by Idalia and he has directed a whole of government response to ensure that those impacted may have everything they may need,” said White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on Thursday afternoon.
The president said that he has been in consistent contact with Gov. Ron DeSantis and is calling upon Congress to ensure future funding for FEMA in future disaster recoveries.
“To the people of Florida and throughout the southeast, I’m here to make clear that the nation has your back,” said Biden. We’re not going to slow down and we’re not going to give up.”
Biden also disclosed today while speaking to FEMA operatives that he will travel to The Sunshine State on Saturday to assess damaged regions, though it is unclear at this time if the president will meet with DeSantis.