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Governor seeks disaster aid

Gov. Lawton Chiles on Thursday requested a federal disaster declaration by the U.S. Small Business Administration for Pinellas County to help homeowners and businesses recover from Monday's tornado.

The storm caused $4.5-million damage to 190 buildings in Pinellas County, all in Clearwater, Largo and Indian Rocks Beach. Clearwater reported the bulk of the damage, $4-million to houses, apartment buildings, businesses and the Clearwater High School gym.

Tony Rivas, the school system's director of facilities, said crews hope to repair the gym roof by Monday to prevent more damage. Next week, Rivas said the school system will consider other improvements to the roof and the gym. The repairs will cost $20,000.

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