FEMA county disaster declarations now span the state

Now residents in 17 counties can apply for federal aid to cover Hurricane Ian losses.

A new round of disaster declarations Saturday makes it official: Hurricane Ian’s ravages span the state, from the Gulf Coast to the Atlantic Ocean.

Flagler, Putnam, St. Johns and Volusia counties were added to the list of counties now eligible to receive assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), according to a new release from the agency.

“Good news,” Republican Rep. Mike Waltz tweeted Saturday, after tweeting a host of photos from his district showing flooded-out streets.

Volusia and St. Johns were added to the declaration first. An hour later, Waltz tweeted that Flagler and Putnam counties were added.

President Joe Biden on Thursday declared Hurricane Ian a major disaster and agreed the federal government will cover 100% of debris removal and emergency protective measures for the next 30 days in the state.

When individual counties get named in the declaration, however, it means that individuals in those counties can also apply for individual assistance from FEMA. That assistance can help with temporary housing, basic home repairs and other, uninsured disaster-related needs.

The four counties named Saturday are in addition to Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Hardee, Hillsborough, Lee, Manatee, Orange, Osceola, Polk, Pinellas, Sarasota and Seminole counties.

Scenes from the Gulf Coast show roads collapsed and buildings leveled. As Ian moved inland, however, it produced historic rainfall, flooding out streets and homes. Damage estimates are in the tens of billions.

The state’s entire congressional delegation has sent the President a request to expand the individual FEMA aid to all 67 counties.

Still, the Republican delegation from Florida voted against the continuing resolution Friday that extends funding for federal agencies, that including FEMA. The Friday vote passed, however, 230-201. The Senate passed the continuing resolution 72-25 with Sen. Rick Scott voting against it and Sen. Marco Rubio not voting on it.

Survivors can apply for disaster assistance at disasterassistance.gov, by using the FEMA mobile app, or by calling 800-621-3362 from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Anne Geggis

Anne Geggis is a South Florida journalist who began her career in Vermont and has worked at the Sun-Sentinel, the Daytona Beach News-Journal and the Gainesville Sun covering government issues, health and education. She was a member of the Sun-Sentinel team that won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for coverage of the Parkland high school shooting. You can reach her on Twitter @AnneBoca or by emailing [email protected].


  • Jay Smif

    October 2, 2022 at 1:39 am

    Pudgy Fascist Ron DeSantis has failed the state completely, first with how many tens of thousands he killed with COVID-19, then with his utter mismanagement of the hurricane preparations and not properly warning the citizens of the state. This will be the end for him, and for good reason.

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  • Thomas McCormick

    October 10, 2022 at 9:00 pm

    How can an appeal be made to add more counties to the individual assistance disaster declarations? I do not understand how my county can have disaster declarated counties to the North, South, and East of its borders but Marion County is not included. I live less than 1 mile from the county border of 2 of these 4 counties that surround Marion County that are on the disaster declarations list. It just is not right and there is nothing published to show what measurements/criteria are used to make the determination by FEMA. Can anyone out there help with suggestions/directions/prayers? Thanks,

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