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To find whether Citrus County qualifies for Small Business Administration Loans following recent flooding, the Citrus County Sheriff’s Office will be doing preliminary flood damage assessments this week.

The Citrus County Sheriff’s Office community Emergency Response Team, under the direction of the office’s Emergency Management Team, will be conducting the assessments.  

Response team members will be confirming damage previously reported to either CCSO’s Emergency Management or other county officials. Their job will be to collect new data and information regarding the reported damage.

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Team members will be working throughout various areas in the county. They can be identified by their green Emergency Response Team shirts and hard hats, according to the sheriff’s office.

Emergency team members will also have credentials, which can be presented if not clearly displayed, according to the sheriff’s office.

For more information regarding these damage assessments or other operations of CCSO’s Emergency Management team, please contact 352-249-2703.

The assessment comes after Citrus County saw record breaking rainfall that left many homes and structures flooded. Many had to leave their flooded homes and businesses as standing water made its way inside.

From Jan. 1 to Sept. 27, Citrus County received 61 inches of rain. That was 14 inches above the norm.

The county’s rain broke a rainfall record for Citrus County dating back to 1915.

The county is on pace to receive about 68 inches of rain for the year if it receives average rainfall for the remainder from October to December, said Dr. Mark Fulkerson, chief professional engineer with the Southwest Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD).

The Citrus County Commission unanimously passed a local emergency declaration in late September. That was the first step in a lengthy process which would allow residents without insurance to apply for low-interest Small Business Administration loans to help them rebuild their flood-damaged homes and move back.

Contact Chronicle reporter Fred Hiers at fred.hiers@chronicleonline.com or 352-397-5914.