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Nearly A Week After Hurricane Michael, Leon County Residents Now Eligible For FEMA Aid

Leon is joining the list of counties where Federal Emergency Management Agency assistance is now available. The designation comes a week after Hurricane Michael struck the region.

Prior to Tuesday’s announcement Leon County had only been eligible for government aid for things like debris cleanup and road repairs. Now individuals in Leon County can apply to FEMA for temporary housing, and emergency home repairs. But those services provided are only band-aids.

“We are not in the business of making you whole again, to where you were again before Hurricane Michael, but to help you get back on your feet," says FEMA Spokesman Nate Custer. " Even if you have insurance, with or without insurance, go ahead and register with FEMA. It costs nothing to do this.”  

FEMA says it took Leon longer to get approved for individual assistance because its damages weren’t as easily identifiable as harder hit counties to the west.

"The numbers were already conclusive that those counties in harder hit areas met the threshold," says FEMA Spokeswoman Nikki Gaskins. 

Leon now joins Bay, Calhoun, Franklin, Gadsden, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, Liberty, Taylor, Wakulla, and Washington counties where individual assistance is available.

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Lynn Hatter is a Florida A&M University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lynn has served as reporter/producer for WFSU since 2007 with education and health care issues as her key coverage areas.  She is an award-winning member of the Capital Press Corps and has participated in the NPR Kaiser Health News Reporting Partnership and NPR Education Initiative. 

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