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Palm Coast residents look to state and federal dollars for tornado repairs

3:37 PM, Dec 19, 2013   |    comments
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Palm Coast-Fla. -- Palm Coast residents are picking up the pieces after a confirmed EF1 tornado touched down Saturday evening. The estimated cost of damage stands at $5.6 million, and now residents are hoping state and federal dollars can help with repair costs.  

Thursday, the U.S. Small Business Administration and Florida's Division of Emergency Management toured the area hit by the tornado. Palm Coast will be eligible for aid if 25 or more homes or businesses sustained damage of at least 40 percent of their replacement value. The tornado left its mark in the B, C, and F sections- destroying seven homes and damaging 171 more.

City of Palm Coast Fire Chief, Mike Beadle says, "If you ask me, I say we met that threshold a long time ago. But, I am not the one to make that decision. So, we brought the professionals in... the people who have all of those answers on the state and federal level and we are going to let them make those determinations."

Palm Coast resident, Suzanne Bispo says her property was severely damaged, including damage to her shed, fences and fire pit. She is one of hundreds of Palm Coast residents crossing their fingers- hoping the state and federal government come through with repair dollars. Even through all of the devastation, her spirits remain high. "I can't be sad because it's just material-- my kids are okay, and that's all that counts," said Bispo.

Beadle is optimistic about the recovery process, noting it's been smoother than he imagined. To report damage, call the city's customer service number at 386-986-2360.

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