Press Release

U.S. Rep. Castor presses for an increase in federal disaster aid

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Tampa, September 12, 2017 | comments
I intend to be a proactive partner to our local Tampa and Hillsborough County communities to speed recovery.
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U.S. Representative Kathy Castor (FL14) is pressing for an increase in federal disaster aid to the highest share possible to help Floridians recover swiftly from the damage caused by Hurricane Irma.  She spoke directly with Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Brock Long last night to urge reimbursement to local partners, such as Hillsborough County Public Schools, as quickly as possible.

“I intend to be a proactive partner to our local Tampa and Hillsborough County communities to speed recovery,” U.S. Rep. Castor said.  “I will press electric utilities to restore power and ensure that our local partners have the resources to speed debris removal in the short term and fight for all disaster aid in the long term.  That is why I have joined with others in the Florida congressional delegation to call for an increase in the federal share of public assistance, swift reimbursement for local partners and prompt review and approval of individual requests for assistance.”

Under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Assistance Act, catastrophic storms like Hurricanes Irma and Harvey warrant a higher federal cost share to cover clean up and recovery efforts. U.S. Rep. Castor supports an increase to a 100% federal cost for Public Assistance Category A, which is currently being funded at a 75% federal cost share.

“As our neighbors return to their homes and survey the damage we will begin to understand the severity of damage inflicted upon homes, businesses, and schools,” U.S. Rep. Castor said.  “The increased federal cost share will be critical to hiring local contractors and bolstering local government debris removal.”

“I am proud of the way our community has rallied and the entire Florida delegation is working together to ensure a swift response and recovery,” U.S. Rep. Castor continued.  “Due to our collective efforts and fast action at the federal level, Florida has been approved for FEMA Public Assistance for all 67 counties and Individual Assistance has been approved for Hillsborough County.”

"I met with Hillsborough County Administrator Mike Merrill and our local FEMA representative at the Hillsborough EOC this morning as they transition from response to recovery mode.  Importantly, individuals who suffered storm damage should consult FEMA’s Individual Assistance Program at disasterassistance.gov/ and download the FEMA app to speed action."

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