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Rick Scott activates Florida Disaster Fund for Michael relief

Gov. Rick Scott activated the Florida Disaster Fund to support those impacted by Hurricane Michael, a dangerous Category 4 storm expected to make landfall in the Panhandle Wednesday afternoon. 

The Fund provides financial support to communities throughout the state in times of disaster.

Contributions can be made at the Florida Disaster Fund website or by texting DISASTER to 20222 to make a one-time donation of $10.

Duke Energy has already committed $50,000 to the fund.

“As the state’s official fund for disaster response and recovery, the Florida Disaster Fund is an excellent way for the private sector and individuals to financially support Floridians affected by Hurricane Michael,” said Volunteer Florida CEO David Mica Jr.

The Florida Disaster Fund is a private fund officially established to respond and recover to natural disasters in the state. The Volunteer Florida Foundation administers the fund.

The foundation will allocate funds to disaster relief organizations active in Hurricane Michael recovery efforts.

Donations to the fund are tax deductible.

To give, checks should be made payable to the Volunteer Florida Foundation and have “Florida Disaster Fund” in the memo line.

Send checks to:

Volunteer Florida Foundation

Attention: Florida Disaster Fund

3800 Esplanade Way, Suite 180

Tallahassee, FL 32311

Meteorologists consider Hurricane Michael the worst storm to hit the region in more than a century, with an expected 12 inches of rainfall in some areas and storm surges reaching 13 feet.

Extensive flooding could completely cover homes, Scott warned during a briefing Wednesday morning.

The Tampa Bay area may also be affected, as Michael could create surges as outer bands reach the region.

Mandatory and voluntary evacuations were ordered in 22 of Florida’s 67 counties and 140,000 residents in the Panhandle were asked to leave.

Relief efforts are already underway as the Florida National Guard stands by for rescue operations. Utility crews are on standby for power restoration after the storm passes.

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for Patch.com and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a die-hard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics, including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and contentious issues surrounding transit. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also a devoted wife and mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder.

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