Washington, DC -- FEMA today announced that an additional $215 million will be made available for buyouts and relocations of properties damaged by hurricanes Floyd, Irene and Dennis. These funds are above and beyond what is being made available for mitigation efforts through FEMA's Hazard Mitigation Grant Program.
"We are pleased that additional money can be made available to reduce the risk of future flooding," said FEMA Director James Lee Witt. "Only through mitigation measures that include building back safer and smarter can we ensure that these communities will be spared such tragedy in the future."
Thirteen states from Florida to New England received federal disaster declarations due to the flooding associated with Hurricane Floyd and the other two hurricanes, and more than $108 million has been set aside for post-disaster mitigation. By law, roughly 15 percent of the federal cost of a disaster declaration is made available to states to initiate risk reduction and prevention measures.
All 13 states are given an opportunity to apply for the additional buyout funds, which are approved by Congress and come from a separate emergency contingency fund. The states will disburse the funds they receive, which must be matched by 25 percent non-federal funding and can be used only for primary residences that are uninhabitable due to the disaster.
The announcement is posted in the Federal Register and can be obtained through www.nara.gov.