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Cape Coral leaders discuss progress as FEMA moves in more than 100 trailers

Cape Coral FEMA trailers
Posted at 4:04 PM, Feb 09, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-09 19:36:40-05

CAPE CORAL, Fla. — On Thursday during a regular Cape Coral Chamber of Commerce meeting, leaders like Cape Coral Mayor John Gunter were joined by others like Cape Coral’s Fire Chief Ryan Lamb to assess how the city has handled Hurricane Ian.

During that meeting, Mayor Gunter said in the future, city leaders need to push for quicker response times from the federal government, specifically when it comes to providing emergency housing.

“We know we have people living in homes that shouldn't be, but they have nowhere to go,” said Gunter.

It's a lack of response from FEMA, according to Gunter.

“What’s it, two days, we finally got our first FEMA trailer?” said Gunter.

On Thursday, a Cape Coral spokesperson said there are spaces for 105 trailers at the Tranquility Lakes RV Resort off Burnt Store Road in Cape Coral.

That spokesperson told Fox 4 the city gave them the green light this week, allowing FEMA to set up the site.

Fox 4 has reached out to FEMA for more information on the RV trailers and is awaiting their response.

It was a timeline Mayor Gunter said they want to improve for future storms.

“Our part is to make sure we communicate to the right people that hey, this didn't work this time,” said Gunter.

While also looking at other aspects like the city’s Emergency Operation Center.

“Honestly our EOC now isn't to the size it needs to be,” said Gunter.

Cape Coral Fire Chief Ryan Lamb talked about expanding the EOC during Thursday's discussion.

“Creating additional space at the EOC is one of our projects," said Lamb.

According to Lamb, expanding the city’s EOC will improve communication and response times during hurricanes, and is now a city council-accepted project that is now in need of funding.

“We are looking at things like our state through appropriations and something called a hazard mitigation grant through the federal government,” said Lamb.

It's a possible solution to issues Mayor Gunter said are now being looked at as part of the city’s self-assessment phase moving forward.

"If the community thinks or has a suggestion of how we could have responded better as a city, we are open to hearing that dialogue,” said Gunter.

Mayor Gunter said people should reach out to their district's council members to relay these suggestions.

Click here for a list of Cape Coral Council members and contact information.