Bay County Commissioners are expecting to receive their first reimbursements from FEMA in the coming weeks.
They are anticipating to spend more than $600 million total in hurricane recovery, and to get most of that back, they must send their receipts from recovery projects to FEMA.
Assistant County Manager, Joel Schubert, said they submitted a receipt for debris removal totaling $36.1 million to the agency last week under the expedited reimbursement program, which gives the county back 50 percent of the costs.
Then next month, he said they are planning to submit a receipt of about $50 million for emergency response.
“The result of that 50 percent will be in the next two to three months we should get approximately 45 million dollars back,” he said.
So far, the county has spent roughly $100 million on recovery efforts, and with the number increasing everyday, Schubert said these won’t be the only projects they submit for reimbursement.
“So whether that gets lumped in to 10 more projects or 20, it just depends,” he said.
Schubert said right now the county staff’s top priority is making sure they are submitting them carefully so they can get as much of their money back as possible.
“It’s not being the first one in, it’s being the entity that gets all that money back,” he said. “If your documentation is not correct, FEMA can claw all that money back. That’s not going to happen in the county.”
The reimbursements they get back will then be used to pay off their hurricane recovery loans.