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Federal And State Agencies Plan To Rebuild Smarter

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Release date: 
September 17, 2010
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LAREDO, Texas -- Future storm damages are less likely to occur when the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) join forces and provide extra funding to mitigate public facilities so that they are better prepared to face and withstand impending disasters.

Federal funding is available to state and eligible local government and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-share basis for emergency work and the repair/replacement and mitigation of infastructure damaged by Hurricane Alex and subsequent flooding.

"Disaster recovery includes building smarter and stronger for better protection from future disasters," said Federal Coordinating Officer Brad Harris. "Mitigation specialists from FEMA’s Public Assistance (PA) program will be working closely with our state and local partners to identify cost effective mitigation projects that will reduce risk of future damage for all eligible projects.”

The FEMA PA program works in coordination with state and local officials to identify, develop and fund recovery measures to include the restoration of disaster damaged government and certain private nonprofit organizations’ facilities. Facilities are identified as roads, bridges, water control facilities, buildings, equipment, utilities, parks and other recreational facilities. In addition, FEMA will provide recommendations for project specific hazard mitigation as part of the restoration process.

This mitigation is provided and funded under FEMA 406 mitigation. The cost share of the additional mitigation is 75 percent from FEMA with the remaining 25 percent to be the responsibility of the applicant.

“The goal is to allow local officials an opportunity to reduce risk of damage to their infrastructure and in the long term save scarce local dollars,” said Harris. “Mitigation projects have to be looked at as an investment with a significant return. An independent study shows that for every dollar spent on 406 mitigation, the applicant will save $4 in future repair costs.”

Eligible are Calhoun, Cameron, Cottle, Dawson, Floyd, Foard, Garza, Jim Hogg, Hidalgo, Lamb, Lubbock, Lynn, Jim Wells, Maverick, Motley, Starr, Terry, Webb, Willacy and Zapata counties.

“Given the history of storms and hurricanes in the Gulf, it certainly makes sense to be prepared for future disasters,” said State Coordinating Officer Ben Patterson.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers low-interest disaster loans to certain private nonprofit organizations to repair and/or replace damaged or destroyed property.  Private nonprofits should first register with FEMA, and may be referred to SBA to apply.  Private nonprofits can contact SBA Customer Service Center at (800) 659‑2955 or visit our website at to apply online. SBA can also lend additional funds to help with the cost of making improvements that protect, prevent or minimize the same type of disaster damage from occurring in the future.

For more information on the Hurricane Alex disaster recovery, browse the features on this FEMA Web site at Users of smart phones and other mobile devices can visit Texans should also visit for more information on this disaster and preparation for future disasters.

FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigat...

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
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