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Flood relief may be available

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To the editor:

During our most recent flooding events I was contacted by many people in Levy County who were asking for help with recovery. After meeting with numerous individuals and homeowner groups I was able to bring local organizations together to help some of our residents. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Central Florida Community Action Agency, Inglis /Yankeetown Lion’s Club, Master’s Hand Food Pantry and Daystar for their contributions. All were able, in their own ways, to improve the lives of those in need and help them through difficult times.
Also, I would like to thank our county personnel, particularly Bruce Greenlee, Director of the Levy County Road Dept. and his staff, and Mark Johnson, Director of Emergency Management, for their help. I heard nothing but appreciation from our residents with regard to the response time and professional demeanor of our county employees.
One comment I heard over and over from residents was “please don’t forget us when the flooding is gone”. I promised I would not and that I would investigate any options available to permanently alleviate flooding in the future.  
Although not a new program, the Florida Division of Emergency Management is offering new options for flood mitigation assistance for Florida residents and they may be helpful to some property owners. Assistance comes in the form of loans and grants, with some grants being 100% and others requiring a property owner contribution. Programs offer many things, including but not limited to, residence elevation out of the flood waters and property purchase. It can be a complicated program; however, a representative from the agency is available to help Levy County residents navigate the process. To see if you qualify or if a program would offer the assistance you need please contact Mr. Kirkland Spraggins at 850-413-9951 or email at Kirk.spraggins@em.myflorida.com . Mr. Spraggins is our area representative. He is extremely knowledgeable about the state programs and understands our particular flooding issues.
As always, if I can be of further assistance, I am available by email at marshaedrew@bellsouth.net or phone at 352 447-5285.
Marsha Drew
Levy County Commissioner, District 3