Soon after Mahoney made phone calls and sent letters to FEMA as well as arranged for a special meeting with Paulison, where he was accompanied by the woman and another county official the staffers say.
Following the meeting, Mahoney wrote Paulison a thank you letter. "I greatly appreciate your thoughtful consideration of this matter," he wrote.
The results were not immediate. Mahoney had to meet with Paulison a second time, according to a press release on his website.
But by September, FEMA finally agreed to pay Martin County the $3.4 million, according to the county press release. A spokesperson for FEMA said in a statement that "after closer examination of the documentation the county submitted" they determined that the city had met the legal standard for reimbursement.
"I would like to commend our congressmen and staff for all their tremendous efforts to secure these funds," said Donaldson, in the press release, noting that Rep. Alcee Hastings and Sen. Mel Martinez had also supported the county efforts.