Historic Mote-Morris house repairs to be funded up to more than $500K over insured value

Funding will immediately provide about $1,225,000 for repairs

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LEESBURG, Fla. – The historic Mote-Morris house in Leesburg that was ravaged by fire in late February will be getting repairs, and city officials said they will be funded up to $500,000 more than the insured value of the house.

Commissioners and the community gathered on March 12 to discuss the future of the home, which was insured for $725,000. At that time, city officials said a structural engineer who inspected the house estimated repairs could cost $1 million to $2 million.

"I feel like it's worth doing whatever it takes to restore it as long as it's not absolutely unreasonable," said John O'Kelley, with the Leesburg Historic Preservation Board.

City officials Monday night said they were notified by Brown and Brown Insurance of the funding, which will immediately provide about $1,225,000 for repairs. They said that additional funds may be available based on other conditions.

Initial findings were that the house was just one-third damaged beyond repair, and that a repair plan must be reviewed by the Historic Preservation Board.

City officials said they are currently pursuing repairing the Mote-Morris house within the parameters of the insurance proceeds.

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Dawn is a Digital Content Editor who has been with Graham Media Group since April 2013. She graduated from Texas State University with a degree in electronic media.