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State leaders react to re-designation of Hurricane Michael

BAY COUNTY, Fla. -- News of the re-designation of Hurricane Michael to a category five came as no surprise to state leaders and they hope to get funding to the Panhandle sooner. 

"Now the work is fixin' to start. The pathway now is open," said Senator George Gainer. 

Representative Jay Trumbull said, "our people are the very best people that are looking to give a handout but in this situation, our people need help."

State leaders senator Gainer and Trumbull encouraged after news broke Friday morning. 

"Honestly I think it's just one of those things where, ya know, finally somebody is agreeing with us in D.C.," said Trumbull. 

As the hurricane-impacted areas continue to await federal funding, Senator Gainer says this could open doors to save the state and county a lot of money. "The federal government will move from 75% participation to 90% and that leaves the state and the counties only 10% so if we divide that 5% and 5% is a lot of difference."

The 90/10 will only be possible if the Federal Government approves it. Local officials hoping Governor Ron DeSantis' good relationship with President Donald Trump will play a factor. 

Overall, Gainer says this move is a piece of hope for the survivors.

"Our city and county officials have really been on their toes and this what they've been waiting on and the bell's sounding now and we can go to work for the people of bay county and remind them they have not been forgotten and won't be until this thing is put back together," said Gainer. 

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