Disaster Housing Recovery Updates – November 21, 2022

Hurricane Ian Updates

Landlords are using Hurricane Ian as an excuse to evict tenants, who have little chance of finding alternative housing in disaster-stricken southern Florida.

Areas that only experienced light impacts from Hurricane Ian were washed away by Hurricane Nicole, which impacted Florida last week.

The rental market in areas impacted by Hurricane Ian remains in shambles approximately a month after the storm hit Florida.

Migrant workers, who are often a key part of the disaster-recovery workforce, are being forced out of Florida in the aftermath of Ian.

Local frog populations are exploding in some areas of Florida following torrential rains brought by Hurricane Ian.

Households are continuing to live in tents in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian as their homes are gutted and they work to rebuild.

Hurricane Fiona Updates

FEMA announced the permanent closure of seven disaster recovery centers in the hard-hit areas of Aguadilla, Cabo Rojo, Guanica, Naguabo, Rincon, San German, and Yabacoa in Puerto Rico. Hurricane Fiona disaster survivors must apply for FEMA Individual Assistance by the end of today (November 21).

Hurricane Fiona has made life in rural areas of Puerto Rico even more difficult, in large part because these areas have been disproportionately impacted by recent disasters but neglected by post-disaster recovery efforts.

The Government Accountability Office “watchblog” details obstacles that have slowed or prevented effective disaster recovery efforts following Hurricane Maria, which struck Puerto Rico in 2017.

FEMA and the Puerto Rico government have laid out those steps needed to increase the generation capacity and improve the transmission and distribution system of Puerto Rico’s power grid.

Congressional and National Updates

The White House issued a budget request on November 15 to the U.S. Congress asking for support for disaster-stricken communities.

Ninety percent of all counties in the U.S. have experienced a weather disaster over the past decade, and these climate-fueled events have caused more than $740 billion in damages, according to a new report showing that disasters are now common across the country. 

State and Local Updates


Flagler County emergency management officials will meet with members of the Florida Division of Emergency Management and FEMA on November 14 to determine whether the county meets the criteria for a federal disaster declaration after Hurricane Nicole. If a declaration is approved, the county can receive public assistance to recuperate the expenses incurred from the storm, and residents and businesses can receive individual assistance with paying for expenses related to the storm.


Louisiana will receive $3.1 billion to support recovery efforts following the storms of 2020 and 2021, according to the governor’s office. 


More than 300 homeowners and renters recently self-reported that their homes still need repairs to make them fit to live in, following the flooding disaster in June. Families need to repair damaged heating, water, and sewage systems before temperatures drop this winter. The affordable housing shortage throughout the state is exacerbating such housing-related challenges. 

New Jersey

New Jersey will receive an additional $149 million in Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funds to help its communities recover from the impacts of Hurricane Ida. The hurricane struck the state in March 2021, killing 30 people and destroying hundreds of homes.

New Mexico

Victims of the Calf Canyon/Hermit’s Peak fire in northern New Mexico can now begin applying for FEMA compensation for losses incurred during the spring and summer of 2022. The fire charred almost 350,000 acres in the state after U.S. Forest Service prescribed burns went out of control.

The New Mexico Coalition of Community Foundations is partnering with the nonprofit UpTogether to provide one-time, $1,000 payments to residents affected by wildfires or post-fire flooding. Priority will be given to those adversely impacted by the Hermits Peak/Calf Canyon Fire. The funds will not affect eligibility for other disaster recovery assistance.