Public Assistance Program Aids Community Recovery

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DENVER – FEMA’s Public Assistance (PA) Program provides funding reimbursement to state and local governments and certain types of private nonprofit organizations to restore public infrastructure and conduct response activities supporting public health and safety.

Under the program, there are two general categories, emergency work and permanent work. Emergency work projects can include debris removal and emergency protective measures, which assist with emergency operations such as sheltering and threats to public health and safety. Permanent work projects can include repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities, such as roads, bridges, public utilities, including water treatment and electrical plants, government buildings and parks.

After a disaster declaration, the PA process begins with the state conducting applicant briefings to explain the program and provide high-level information to all potential applicants. After applicant briefings are conducted, government entities or private nonprofit organizations submit their requests for public assistance (RPAs) to FEMA to seek PA funding. FEMA and the State then review the submitted requests and determine eligibility.

Once applicants have been approved, FEMA assigns a Program Delivery Manager (PDMG) to each applicant to work to identify potential projects, to help collect information, and answer questions from the applicant throughout the PA grant development process. Project development is a collaborative effort between FEMA, the state and the applicant, with all sides involved from initial damage site inspection to final funding. The program also encourages efforts to prevent facilities from being damaged again in future events by providing assistance for hazard mitigation measures when repairs are made or replacement occurs.

The FEMA PA program is a cost share reimbursement program. The applicant does the work, provides documentation to FEMA and the state, and then FEMA reimburses the federal cost share. The federal cost share of assistance is not less than 75 percent of the eligible cost. The remaining cost is shared between the state and the applicant. Colorado is providing 12.5% of the 25% for non-state applicants as part of the Boulder County disaster declaration. Grant awards will not duplicate assistance from other federal programs or insurance proceeds and must comply with all environmental, historic preservation, and floodplain management laws.

For more information about the program, visit:

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