TS Debby Damage Deadline is Tomorrow
LAKE CITY - Time is running out for property owners whose homes were damaged during Tropical Storm Debby. The last day to apply to receive federal aid from FEMA is tomorrow. But as TV20's Trent Kelly shows you in the above story, even those who've applied say they're not getting the help they need.
**Link to FEMA application: www.DisasterAssistance.gov
Hurricane Isaac barely missed the state of florida last week, leaving many residents feeling lucky.
But about 200 homeowners throughout north Florida are still dealing with the effects from the last storm to hit: Tropical Storm Debby.
"I've lost everything, I've lost all my medical equipment," says Whitey Norris, a longtime resident of Cypress Lake road in Lake City, He was forced to leave his home after the floodwaters threatened. "I was only able to make it out with two Walmart bags full of stuff," says Norris.
Now, more than 60 days since the storm first passed through, Cypress Lake road is still living up to its name. The water stands nearly 5 feet high in some places, completely covering mailboxes, and even a Jeep.
In the two months since the storm has passed, the water has only receded about two inches at Norris' home, meaning it could stay like this for months to come.
Norris says FEMA refuses to enter his home to evaluate the damage until the water level decreases. "They say they can't get in because of the water, but what's to stop them from putting on wetsuits," says Norris.
But Jim Homstead of FEMA says residents should not depend on his agency to get everything back. "FEMA is not designed to restore your property to a pre-disaster condition. It's designed to help you take your first steps on the road to recovery," says Holmstead.
So as FEMA officials continue to wait for the water level to recede, so too will Norris. Trent Kelly, TV20 News.
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