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Marco Rubio asks FEMA to prepare for federal disaster relief to Tampa Bay area

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

The skies were clear Tuesday morning in Tampa, but again rains were expected later in the day during what has been an intense period of wet weather that has led to widespread flooding in Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco counties.

Two days after Pinellas area U.S. Rep. David Jolly wrote a letter to the Federal Emergency Management Agency asking the federal government to pay special attention to the Tampa Bay area if it decides to deploy aid to Florida, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio is now following suit.

“Areas of the Tampa Bay region, along with parts of Central and North Florida, have seen record amounts of rainfall during the past few weeks,” Rubio wrote today to FEMA head Craig Fugate.  “According to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather reports, these areas are likely to experience even more severe weather in the days and weeks to come.”

Flooding has been the major issue resulting from the constant rains. It has closed roads,  forced evacuations and damaged some homes and apartment buildings.

Last week, Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for Dixie, Hillsborough, Pasco, Pinellas and Taylor counties, clearing the way for state aid to those counties.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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