Due to the ongoing devastation caused by Hurricane Ian, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis requested that President Biden issue a Major Disaster Declaration for all 67 counties, all categories, and all types of assistance. A Major Disaster Declaration will provide a variety of federal assistance programmes for individuals, as well as funds for both emergency and permanent work, as well as public infrastructure.
“This is going to be a nasty nasty day, two days,” Ron DeSantis requests Biden’s aid as hurricane Ian lashes Florida
Hurricane Ian, one of the most powerful storms ever recorded in the U.S., swamped southwest Florida on Wednesday, flooding streets and buildings, knocking out power to over 1 million people and threatening catastrophic damage further inland.
As Ian wreaks havoc over the Sunshine state, Governor DeSantis also requested President Biden grant the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) the authority to provide 100% federal cost share for debris removal and emergency protective measures (FEMA Categories A and B) for the first 60 days from landfall. This FEMA grant can only be authorized by the President of the United States.
About 2.5 million people were ordered to evacuate southwest Florida before Ian hit, but by law no one could be forced to flee.
On Wednesday, Hurricane Ian, one of the most powerful storms ever recorded in the United States, flooded southwest Florida, knocking out power to over 1 million people and threatening catastrophic damage further inland.
While Ian wreaks havoc on Florida, Governor DeSantis has asked President Biden to grant the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) the authority to provide a 100% federal cost share for debris removal and emergency protective measures (FEMA Categories A and B) for the first 60 days after landfall. Only the President of the United States can authorise this FEMA grant.
Before Ian hit, about 2.5 million people were ordered to evacuate southwest Florida, but no one could be forced to leave.
Although Ian was expected to weaken to a tropical storm as it moved inland at about 9 mph (14 kph), hurricane force winds were expected to be felt well into central Florida. Top sustained winds had dropped to 130 mph just hours after landfall (210 kph). On the other side of the state, in northeast Florida, storm surges of up to 6 feet (2 metres) were expected.
Governor DeSantis urged people in or near the hurricane’s path to seek the safest possible shelter as soon as possible and to stay there until the storm passed. “This is going to be a nasty nasty day, two days,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said.
Biden administration prepares aid in the wake of Ian
US President Joe Biden said on Wednesday that he had spoken with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis about Hurricane Ian the day before, and that the federal government had met every request for assistance from the coastal state.
President Biden has directed the heads of all federal agencies to deploy all available resources to the region in preparation for potential impacts, as well as to assist with response and recovery efforts in the aftermath of the storm.
Within hours of receiving the request from Governor DeSantis, President Biden approved an Emergency Declaration for the State of Florida on Saturday, September 24, to support preparedness efforts and ensure resources are pre-positioned in advance of potential storm impacts.
FEMA is coordinating across the federal government to support state and local preparations, as directed by President Biden. Furthermore, the President and the Administration urge everyone to heed the advice of local officials.
The President also warned oil companies not to use Hurricane Ian as an excuse to raise gas prices. “Do not, let me repeat, do not…use this as an excuse to raise gasoline prices or gouge the American people” Biden said, adding, “This small temporary storm impact on oil production provides no excuse for price increases at the pump. None.”