Thursday, December 23, 2004

The Last County (Not) Standing

"A Very FEMA Christmas" is the headline for Patrick Whittle's report today in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune. It's mostly about how Charlotte County victims of Hurricane Charley will be celebrating Christmas by losing their FEMA trailers.
After Hurricane Charley destroyed their homes, hundreds of people like North Fort Myers' Vanessa Hallman moved into travel trailers, paid for by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, in private commercial parks.

Four and a half months after Charley, FEMA's leases at some of the parks are expiring, leaving the agency to find more trailers and move residents to other parks.

Starting the day after Christmas, hurricane victims will move to other short-term parks or to a 551-unit long-term park on Airport Road, FEMA spokesman Brad Gair said.
Here's the interesting part for Pensacola area citizens: at the very end of Whittle's article, the FEMA spokesman acknowledges that, "Most of families who are just now moving into FEMA housing are in the Panhandle... ."

"Really, Escambia County is the last remaining county that has a significant amount of need," Gair said. "The other counties are in very good shape. That doesn't mean everybody has a place yet."

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