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Hazard Mitigation Grant Program

This section contains information about our Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP). The purpose of this page is to connect individuals and state, local, and tribal government representatives with the resources they need to implement hazard mitigation measures in their communities.

FEMA’s vision is to serve as a catalyst that drives increased understanding and proactive action to help people in communities reduce their losses from natural hazards. To support this vision, FEMA funds three Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) grant programs. Hazard mitigation measures are any sustainable action taken to reduce or eliminate long-term risk to people and property from future disasters. The HMGP supports cost-effective post-disaster projects and is the longest running mitigation program among FEMA’s three grant programs. Studies have shown that every $1 spent equals $4 of future damages mitigated.

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Program Overview

The purpose of HMGP is to help communities implement hazard mitigation measures following a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration in the areas of the state, tribe, or territory requested by the Governor or Tribal Executive. The key purpose of this grant program is to enact mitigation measures that reduce the risk of loss of life and property from future disasters. This webpage includes extensive resources and job aids to streamline project implementation. The primary guidance document for this program is the HMA Guidance. HMGP is authorized under Section 404 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act.

HMGP Funding Allocation
 

Since 1989, there have been 1,485 Major Disaster Declarations resulting in the availability of $13.8 billion Hazard Mitigation Grant Program funds. Data current as of Feb. 2017.

FEMA offers a variety of disaster assistance programs with different eligibility requirements. HMGP provides funds to states, tribes, and local communities after a disaster declaration to protect public or private property through various mitigation measures. Hazard mitigation includes long-term efforts to reduce the impact of future events. HMGP recipients (states, Federally-recognized tribes, or territories) have the primary responsibility for prioritizing, selecting, and administering state and local hazard mitigation projects. Although individuals may not apply directly to the state for assistance, local governments may sponsor an application on their behalf.

Key Program Points

  • HMGP funding is limited; therefore, recipients and local government officials must make difficult decisions as to the most effective use of grant funds.
  • Not all projects may be selected.
  • “Think about the end at the beginning” – Upon start of the funded project, the recipient and subrecipient should be mindful of the Period of Performance (POP) and federal close-out requirements.

Benefits of HMGP

  • Supports risk reduction activities
  • Improves resiliency
  • Eliminates the impact of future events
  • Provides a long-term solution to a problem
    • For example, a project to elevate a home reduces the risk of flood damage from future floods; whereas, buying sandbags and using pumps reduces the risk of damage from a single flood.
  • Offers a cost-effective solution
    • To be funded, a project’s potential savings must be more than the cost of implementing the project.
  • Helps avoid repetitive damage from disasters
    • Funds may be used to protect either public or private property or to purchase property that has been subject to or is in danger of repetitive damage.

Who Can Apply

In general, individuals, businesses and private nonprofits via local governments, can apply for HMGP funding. Individuals may not apply directly for HMGP funding, but may be sponsored through an appropriate subapplicant via a local government, state agency, tribe or tribal agency, or private nonprofit. Applications are submitted to the state, eligible tribe, or territory, which receives HMGP funds from FEMA.

HMGP Application Flow

 State Agencies; Federally-Recognized Tribes; Tribal Agencies; Local Government/Communities to Applicants: Territories; Federally-Recognized Tribes; States to FEMA.

Examples of mitigation projects that can be funded through HMGP include, but are not limited to:

  • Acquisition and Structure Demolition/Relocation – The community purchases and permanently removes, with FEMA funding, a flood-prone property from the individual.
  • Dry Floodproofing of Historic Residential Structures – The home is protected with barriers to prevent floodwater from entering.
  • Elevation – The home is raised so that potential floodwaters may flow underneath the home.
  • Hazard Mitigation Plan – HMGP funding can also be used for mitigation planning activities. FEMA requires state, tribal, and local governments to develop and adopt hazard mitigation plans as a condition for receiving certain types of non-emergency disaster assistance, including funding for HMA mitigation projects. Visit FEMA’s Hazard Mitigation Plan Requirement page for more information.
  • Mitigating Flood and Drought Conditions – Aquifer storage and recovery, floodplain and stream restoration, flood diversion and storage, or green infrastructure methods may support communities in reducing the risks associated with the impacts of flood and drought conditions.
  • Mitigation Reconstruction – The existing home is demolished and a new (similar in size) elevated home is constructed.
  • Structural Retrofitting of Existing Buildings – Enhancements are made to a home to make it more resistant to floods and earthquakes.
  • Residential and Community Safe Rooms – A safe room is constructed inside a home or in a nearby community location close to the home to provide safety from strong winds, such as those experienced during a tornado.
  • Wildfire Mitigation – Fire-resistant materials are used on the exterior of the home and trees or brush are cleared to remove flammable materials from around the home.
  • Wind Retrofit – Enhancements are made to strengthen the roof, walls, doors, and windows and minimize damage caused by high winds.

To be considered for funding under HMGP, a project must:

  • Conform with the approved state and local mitigation plan
  • Benefit the disaster area
  • Conform with environmental regulations
  • Solve a problem and be technically feasible
  • Meet all applicable state and local codes and standards
  • Demonstrate cost-effectiveness
  • Consider a range of alternatives

An additional consideration is if the project is located in an area known as the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), the community must be a participating member of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) in good standing (not on probation, suspended, or withdrawn) in the NFIP.

Cost-Share Requirements

FEMA provides up to 75 percent of the funds for mitigation projects. The remaining 25 percent can come from a variety of sources. A cash payment from the state, local government or in some cases directly from the individual is the most direct option. Other sources may include donated resources, such as construction labor; Increased Cost of Compliance (ICC) funds from a flood insurance policy; or loans from other government agencies, such as the Small Business Administration.

HMGP Cost-Share Example

 FEMA 75%, Non-Federal 25%.House illustration - $150k, Cost of Elevation.$112.5k FEMA HMA grant (75%)$30k ICC payment (20%)$2.5k Donated resources (1.7%)$5k Homeowner (3.3%)

Roles

The table below contains some examples of the differences in the roles for individuals, the local government, the state, tribe, or territory, and FEMA.

HMGP Roles

Individuals’ Role -  Homeowners, renters, business owners.Meet with community officials to decide on the type of mitigation project for your property. Check with the community to see whether community is supporting an application and whether your property can be included. Take photographs of damage and/or existing conditions.Maintain and organize papers or document damages (examples may include insurance claims receipts related to repair).Complete and submit paperwork in a timely manner as requested by the community to support the grant application. Pay part of the project cost, if requested by the community. Comply with the local community to ensure closeout of the project.Subapplicant Role -  Local governments, state or tribal agencies, private nonprofitsPerform damage assessments.Work with state or tribe to determine funding amount and priorities for HMGP. Encourage community members’ involvement in hazard mitigation decision-making.Prepare and submit the grant application to the state or tribe. Determine sources of funding for non-federal match.After FEMA approval, sign and implement the grant agreement. Issue necessary permits. Manage and monitor the progress of the project and ensure compliance. Conduct final inspections and prepare for closeout. Applicant Role - State, Federally-recognized tribes, territories.Request a major disaster declaration by the President to trigger the availability of HMGP funds. Notify FEMA whether the state will participate in HMGP. As needed, update both the State Administrative Plan and the mitigation strategy (e.g., priorities to communities). Assist communities with developing grant applications. Verify Duplication of Benefits. Review application and provide feedback to the community. Submit state- or tribe-approved grant applications to FEMA. Notify communities about FEMA approval decisions. Upon signed grant agreement, initiate project based on terms and conditions of the award. Work with local community to implement and monitor project progress. Close out the project by completing the necessary paperwork and submitting it to FEMA. FEMA Role Conduct joint federal-state/tribal Preliminary Damage Assessment. Review Presidential major disaster declaration. Approve State Administrative Plan. Determine amount of HMGP funding. Provide technical assistance as requested. Receive and review all applications for eligibility and completeness. Approve applications and award funding. Monitor award progress. Initiate closeout documentation of awards.

What's New

The updates to the HMGP webpages are being developed in several phases. The two other HMA grant programs, Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) and Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) will be updated in the near future.

New Job Aids and supporting materials have also been developed as part of this effort.

A new feature on the HMGP website is the HMA Resource and Document Collection Library. This collection hosts all HMA specific resources in one location.

Mitigation Minute

 A project that leads to $1 of benefits for every $1 spent is considered to be cost-effective. Hazard mitigation projects on average have 4 times in future benefits for every dollar spent.

Helpful Links

HMA Resources & Document Collection

Hazard Mitigation Assistance Guidance

Hazard Mitigation Assistance Cost Share Guide

Duplication of Benefits Guide

Last Updated: 
09/19/2018 - 17:46