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More money for trash: FEMA approves $51M more for Ian debris removal

This new money comes on top of $16.8M from previous allocation
Hurricane Ian
Posted at 1:13 PM, Feb 05, 2024

LEE COUNTY, Fla. — More money to get rid of the boat parts, washers, kitchen appliances, dressers and anything else still lingering after Hurricane Ian.

On Monday morning, FEMA announced more than $51.4 million dollars in additional money to reimburse Lee County for debris removal costs after Hurricane Ian in late 2022.

For people driving along the main coastal roads, like Estero Boulevard, San Carlos Boulevard and, on Bonita Beach, Hickory Boulevard, so many items still fill the open space and the mangroves.

"The county is in the process of receiving the funds. Here is how it works: After the storm, the county used Solid Waste Reserves to pay Crowder Gulf and Thompson (the collector and the monitor). Now FEMA is reimbursing us for the money we used to pay them to haul away and tally the debris. When the process is complete and we get the money, it will go into the Solid Waste Reserves fund," Lee County said in a statement.

FEMA reports the removal of debris includes:
- 2 million cubic yards of vegetative debris
- 1.25 million cubic yards of "hurricane-generated" debris
- 217 tons of hazardous materials removed from roads and public property