Governor Rick Scott visits Pasco County to assess flood damage from Tropical Storm Debby

County seeks federal assistance

NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. - Governor Rick Scott started Friday morning at the Emergency Operations Center in Pasco County.

He heard from the Sheriff, the Fire Chief, and many others who were in the middle of the storm and the flooding that followed.

Thousands of homeowners in Pasco County saw their homes damaged, or in some cases destroyed.  And those without insurance are waiting to see where they can get help.

"We are starting the assessments today with the Federal government, and what programs they might be involved in.  But we are going to everything we can to help each community across our state," said Governor Scott.

Emergency management officials say more than 50 homes suffered major damage. That amounts to about $4 million.  Twenty-eight public buildings were also damaged.

"If we meet the threshold that's required for a Presidential declaration (of disaster), which is based on population of the state and the county, then we'd be eligible to request a presidential declaration," said Brian Koon with the State Division of Emergency Management.

County officials say while the water is finally leaving, those effected have a long road ahead.

"They'll be recovering for months.  We are going to be there for them and we are going to guide them through it and we are not going to forget about any one of them," said Pasco Emergency Management Director Annette Doying.

Before leaving Pasco County, the Governor stopped by Susie's Too Diner and found people with good appetites and good attitudes about the wild week of weather.

So when will homeowners get an answer on if and when those federal dollars will come this way?  Officials say that answer could come by the middle of next week. 

They also remind us there are still five months left in hurricane season, and as we have seen, you don't have to live on the coast to be effected.

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