Florida disaster declaration for Hurricane Nicole heads to Biden

10 counties included in disaster declaration

Florida’s disaster declaration for Hurricane Nicole has been signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis and now awaits a final signature from President Joe Biden.

Kevin Guthrie, director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management, told News 6 on Wednesday that the declaration was signed by the governor after his team sent a final damage assessment.

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“We’ve been out all the way from Palm Beach County, all the way north to see the damage that was done there,” Guthrie said. “We put all that data into the document we sent to the governor.”

If approved by Biden, the disaster declaration would provide 10 counties, including Brevard, Flagler and Volusia, with public assistance. Of those 10, six would be eligible for individual assistance.

Florida’s coast saw detrimental damage by Hurricane Nicole, including collapsed buildings. Hurricane Nicole made landfall in Florida as a Category 1 hurricane, marking the third time ever the state has dealt with a hurricane in November.

Florida’s emergency management team also started a pilot program in Volusia County to reinforce the coastline after the recent storms.

“We have decided to go out and test it on about 3,000 feet of Volusia County beaches to keep the tide out so that families can start removing debris,” Guthrie told News 6. “We’re going to keep some housing from going into the ocean. I firmly believe that.”

Guthrie said the next phase of the Hurricane Ian-Nicole revitalization mission is a state and federal task force set to meet next week in Bradenton. The four-hour session will include FEMA’s resilience administrator Victoria Salinas.

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About the Author:

Brenda Argueta is a digital journalist who joined ClickOrlando.com in March 2021. She graduated from UCF and returned to Central Florida after working in Colorado.