Holmes Beach holds off on emergency declaration

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HOLMES BEACH – With Hurricane Dorian’s path uncertain, Holmes Beach Mayor Judy Titsworth is holding off on declaring an emergency in her city.

Titsworth said that she’s holding off until either Sunday, Sept. 1 or Monday, Sept. 2 before declaring a state of emergency for Holmes Beach until the path of the storm is more defined.

Manatee County and both of Holmes Beach’s neighboring cities, Anna Maria and Bradenton Beach, declared a state of emergency on Aug. 30. West Manatee Fire Rescue district also held an emergency board meeting Aug. 30 to declare a state of emergency.

In order to receive reimbursements from FEMA for funds spent during and after a storm, particularly for storm debris clean up, a municipality or district must officially declare a state of emergency. Once a state of emergency is declared, the declaration only lasts for 72 hours. With the timing of Hurricane Dorian’s landfall on the east coast uncertain, Titsworth said she preferred to delay the declaration. She said that the city’s departments are ready for the storm if it should come to our area.

In the meantime, she encouraged Holmes Beach residents to make their preparations for the storm, including gathering supplies and readying their residences for possible high winds and heavy rains.

Sandbags and sand are available to residents at Holmes Beach City Hall, 5801 Marina Drive, on the south end of the parking lot. Residents are asked to bring their own shovels.

For updates on the storm and the city’s preparations, Titsworth asked residents to visit the Holmes Beach Police Department’s Facebook page.

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