PHILADELPHIA, Pa. -- The Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced today the approval of a grant totaling more than $1.5 million to acquire and demolish 24 flood-prone homes in Shickshinny, Pennsylvania.
“This grant will enable flood victims to relocate to safer ground,” said MaryAnn Tierney, FEMA Region III’s Regional Administrator. “Acquiring this land will eliminate future damages and reduce flooding risks to the local community.”
FEMA will pay $1,592,868 - 75 percent of the project costs, which total $2,123,834. The commonwealth or local applicants will provide non-federal funds to pay the remaining 25 percent.
This Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) funding is tied to the disaster declaration issued on April 16, 2010, as a result of severe snowstorms. The grant will be provided to the commonwealth for actions taken to prevent or reduce long-term risk to life and property from natural hazards.
The commonwealth ensures the eligible sub-grantee (local applicant) receives the award.
Under the HMGP, FEMA acquires at-risk properties so the former owners can afford to move to safer locations. The community buys the private property, acquires the title and then clears it. By law, that property is now public property and must forever remain open space.
Funding is available statewide following a presidentially declared disaster. The process is locally driven. Property owners interested in taking steps to reduce risks from future disasters express their interest to their municipal or county officials. If these officials decide to apply for an HMGP grant, they develop a proposal and submit it to the state.
After the state selects the proposals that meet its criteria, FEMA reviews those selections to ensure they are cost effective and in compliance with federal law. If the proposals comply with these guidelines, FEMA releases the funds to the state. FEMA is not involved in the application process nor does it select the projects.
Additional HMGP information is available at www.fema.gov/hazard-mitigation-grant-program-hmgp.
Please note: In accordance with the Privacy Act of 1974, the property addresses cannot be released.
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 mitigate all hazards.