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Nearly $6M In FEMA Aid To Reimburse Hurricane Michael Recovery Costs

Large red brick building with white trim
First United Methodist Church - Panama City
First United Methodist Church in Panama City was rebuilt after receiving damage from Hurricane Michael.

A Panama City church and two state agencies are getting millions in federal aid to recoup Hurricane Michael-related costs.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency approved on Wednesday nearly $6 million in reimbursements, the latest round funding as part of the agency's public assistance grant program.

Here's where the dollars are headed:

  • The First United Methodist Church in Panama City will get $2 million to cover the costs of rebuilding its sanctuary, great hall, learning center and offices.
  • The Florida Department of Corrections is also getting about $2 million to reimburse costs of evacuating and relocating inmates just before the storm hit in October 2018 and over the following year.
  • The Florida Department of Management Services will get $1.5 million for moving the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office and the 911 call center to a new location. The agency also paid for repairs at those locations to ensure emergency services continued.

FEMA’s public assistance grants are dispersed to local communities via the state Department of Emergency Management. The agency is in charge of ensuring funds are paid quickly after FEMA obligates the dollars.

Valerie Crowder hosts and produces state and local newscasts during All Things Considered. Her reporting on local government and politics has received state and regional award recognition. She has also contributed stories to NPR newscasts.