BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) — School board members are continuing to fight for reimbursements from FEMA for Merritt Brown Middle School.

The school was extensively damaged during Hurricane Michael.

The roof was blown off which led to water infiltration in every building.

In May 2021, the first appeal for Merritt Brown Middle School permanent repairs was filed.

In July, the appeal was transmitted to FEMA by Florida Department of Emergency Management.

In August, FEMA rejected it stating that “the claimed work is required as a result of the disaster nor provided the documentation necessary to validate the requested costs,” denying more than $4.8 million of the costs.

But the school district has one more chance to file a second appeal or they can go to arbitration. They have until October 25 to decide which option to choose.

Bay District Schools Director of Facilities Lee Walters said they have all of the invoices to back up the expenses.

“We feel like it is too great a dollar amount we’ve got invoices that we believe back up those expenses Merritt Brown was one of the more impacted schools from Hurricane Michael and it’s just a significant amount of money. We don’t feel like we should just walk away from it we need to exhaust every opportunity in receiving those funds for the district,” Walters said.

Walters said they are working with a law firm that specializes in these matters.

They will then present it to FEMA and move forward from there.