Cedar Key Still Waiting For FEMA Funds As Hurricane Season Arrives


Ten months after Hurricane Hermine made landfall, the city of Cedar Key is still waiting on hundreds of thousands of dollars from FEMA.

Hermine was the first hurricane to strike the state of Florida in 11 years and brought seven feet of water into downtown Cedar Key and millions of dollars in damage to the island. Many businesses are back on their feet after clean-up began 9 months ago, but the city’s bank account is still reeling.

Cedar Key Commissioner Sue Colson estimates that the city excepts hundreds of thousands of dollars in FEMA reimbursements for debris removal and cleanup in the aftermath of the storm, but the city has yet to receive those funds.

We are trying to get more things done, but we can’t get it done until we recoup this money,” Colson said.

Cedar Key City Hall is still not usable almost a year after Hurricane Hermine. The interior is moldy, and the building needs to be raised three feet. (Monica Humphries/WUFT News)

The 2017 hurricane season began June 1, and delayed FEMA funds mean delayed repairs for the city. Cedar Key moved it’s operations to a double-wide trailer in a parking lot months ago, as it waits to make repairs to City Hall.

“We did our half of the equation, we need them to do their half,” Colson said.

In an official statement, FEMA said there is no set time frame for an  applicant to receive assistance:

“There is not set time for an eligible applicant to receive reimbursement FEMA moves the funds as quickly as possible to the State sop they can be disburse to the City. Once the State receives the funds, they determine the schedule for releasing them to the sub-grantee.”

WUFT News also learned from a statement from FEMA that Cedar Key’s funds have already been approved and moved to the state. It is still unknown as to when the state will release the funds to Cedar Key.

(WUFT News)



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