Collier County demands answers on when FEMA trailers will arrive

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People listen to a Collier County Commission meeting on FEMA housing, Tuesday, October 25, 2022. Credit: WINK News

Many people are asking when FEMA will provide trailers to people who lost their homes during Hurricane Ian. The agency still won’t say, and people in Southwest Florida are becoming frustrated with the lack of communication.

Wednesday marks one month since Ian overwhelmed the region, with storm surge and powerful winds destroying thousands of homes. Hundreds are living in shelters, and life there is not easy. People in the North Fort Myers shelter continue to send WINK News pictures of what they call unbearable conditions, with no response from the company the state hired to run the place, and families staying in the shelter at the North Collier Regional Park got a scare of their own when they saw a sign incorrectly declaring the shelter would be closed.

Collier County commissioners made it clear they’re also tired of waiting for the federal government to help those with nowhere to go. Since FEMA isn’t talking, Collier County Emergency Services Director Dan Summers was on the receiving end of questions about trailers at a meeting on Tuesday. He didn’t have any answers, either. At one point, the commissioners made a point of saying they don’t blame him for the lack of communication with FEMA.

Then Commissioner Penny Taylor asked: If and when those trailers come, who will actually get one?

“FEMA looks at things such as insured loss, absence of insured loss, the condition of the property; they look at the income, they look at extenuating circumstances such as medical condition or frailty, so they have a process for evaluating that,” Summers said. “I don’t know every question in that process, but it is obviously an assessment on a case-by-case basis.”

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