Sen. Rick Scott: I’m Fighting to Quickly Deploy Every Federal Resource Needed to Florida

September 29, 2022

Sen. Scott shares resources for families impacted by Hurricane Ian

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Rick Scott released the following guide to federal resources available for Florida families and businesses now working to recover from the devastation of Hurricane Ian. As the storm, which is now Tropical Storm Ian, continues to impact Central and Northeast Florida, Senator Scott is speaking with mayors, law enforcement, business and community leaders, utilities and federal officials to ensure Florida’s families and communities are getting every resource needed to respond to and recover from Ian.


Senator Rick Scott said, “Hurricane Ian has devastated Southwest Florida, and continues to bring torrential rain and dangerous winds to Central and Northeast Florida today. This was a major storm and it demands a well-coordinated major response and recovery effort. Just as I have for the past week, I am continuing to be in constant communication with our mayors, law enforcement, utilities, business and community leaders and state and local officials to make sure we are getting them the help they need to assist families. As Florida’s U.S. Senator, I will be fighting to make sure that FEMA and the entire federal government is working in total concert with state and local officials so we can get resources deployed quickly. As governor, I oversaw the state’s response to Hurricanes Hermine, Matthew, Irma and Michael. FEMA was always a great partner to us during and after these storms, and I expect that to continue in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian. Families across our state are hurting, but help is on the way and Florida will recover.”


See Senator Scott's Hurricane Preparedness Information webpage HERE. Senator Scott urges Floridians impacted by the storm to remain indoors until local officials determine conditions are safe. Stay up-to-date with information from your local Emergency Management officials. Impacted Floridians should not return home until the area is declared to be safe by local officials. Read more from FEMA about returning home HERE.


See the latest on Tropical Storm Ian from the National Hurricane Center at or @NHC_Atlantic on Twitter, and from the Florida Division of Emergency Management at or @FLSERT on Twitter.


Helpful Resources for Individuals:

Senator Scott’s Office

Floridians in need of assistance with federal resources following the impacts of Hurricane Ian can contact Senator Scott’s office HERE.


FEMA’s role is to help communities prepare for and recover from disasters. Find information specific to Hurricane Ian on FEMA’s website HERE, by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-FEMA (800-621-3362), or registering online at


National Flood Insurance Program 
Following a Presidential Disaster Declaration, FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policyholders are encouraged to apply for FEMA disaster assistance in addition to their flood insurance claim. Policyholders impacted by Hurricane Ian are encouraged to contact their insurance agents as soon as possible for more information about filing a claim. Get more details about filing a claim HERE, or reach NFIP assistance directly HERE, or by calling 1-877-336-2627. 


Once starting a claim, FEMA suggests documenting all damage, including photos and videos, recording serial numbers and securing receipts. FEMA also recommends policyholders should take steps to stop the spread of mold if safe to do so.
Citizens Property Insurance 
Citizens Property Insurance is urging policyholders to contact them as soon as possible in the wake of Hurricane Ian. Citizens representatives can be reached online HERE, or by calling 1-866-411-2742. Additionally, Citizens is warning policyholders to be wary of unlicensed contractors and “deals that sound too good to be true.” Policyholders are discouraged from signing anything before consulting with an insurance agent. Citizens policyholders can report suspected fraud online HERE, or by calling 1-855-748-9596. 
U.S. Housing and Urban Development 
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) also offers disaster recovery assistance following Presidentially-declared disasters. Read more from HUD HERE


Helpful Resources for Businesses:

U.S. Small Business Administration 
Following a Presidential Disaster Declaration, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) provides low-interest disaster loans to help businesses and homeowners recover from declared disasters. 


Florida Department of Economic Opportunity 
The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s website provides information about preparing, responding to and recovering from a disaster. The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) and the State Emergency Response Team (SERT) activated the Business Damage Assessment Survey in response to Hurricane Ian. Survey responses will allow the state to expedite Hurricane Ian recovery efforts by gathering data and assessing the needs of affected businesses.


Additional Resources:

Food and Water: As information becomes available, Floridians in need of food and water can find a nearby point of distribution location HERE. Storms can affect public water treatment plants, water lines and private wells—citizens affected by the storms must err on the side of caution until their water is tested. Learn about Boil Water Notices from the Florida Department of Health HERE.


Medications: Early prescription refills are permitted during a state-declared State of Emergency. Learn more from the Florida Department of Health HERE.


National Disaster Distress Hotline: Health and Human Services and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration have a Disaster Distress Hotline (800-985-5990) available 24/7 with bilingual support for Spanish-speakers, video conference is available for the deaf or hard of hearing HERE. Call or text (800-985-5990) to connect with a trained crisis counselor.


Shelter: Shelters are currently open and available, and locations can be found HERE, or through the American Red Cross HERE, or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767). 


Mental Health Resources: You are not alone. If you are in need of support through any disaster, crisis or circumstance, please reach out. Florida 211 connects individuals to local helpline call centers that have crisis counselors for disaster recovery and can provide information on access to local resources such as housing, food and health care. Connect by phone 24/7 by dialing: 2-1-1. Also, the American Red Cross Disaster Distress Helpline is a national helpline that provides crisis support services for individuals in emotional distress that are impacted by disaster. Connect by phone 24/7 by calling or texting 1-800-985-5990.


Price Gouging Hotline: Florida Attorney General Moody’s Price Gouging Hotline remains open for Floridians statewide to report instances of severe price increases on essential commodities needed to prepare for the storm. Florida’s price gouging law only applies to commodities and services essential to preparing for, or recovering from, a storm during a declared state of emergency. If you feel you have been a victim of price gouging, report online HERE, by calling 1-866-9NO-SCAM, or by downloading the NO SCAM app.  


Report a Loved One Sheltering in Place: Provide critical information to first responders regarding individuals who have made the decision to shelter in place. This information can help first responders address the needs of impacted households as quickly as possible. Learn more HERE.


Helpful Reminders:

  • Use extreme caution when operating heavy machinery, generators, or while removing debris. Never use generators indoors and keep them away from windows, doors and vents. 
  • Do not drive or walk through flood waters. Be aware of downed power lines, standing water and other hidden hazards. 
  • Stay off roads so that emergency workers are able to get through.


The following Twitter accounts, along with your local Sheriff’s Office, Police Department and County Emergency Operations Center (EOC), may be helpful for up-to-date information and resources on Hurricane Ian.