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FEMA Awards $4.1 Million for Community Safe Rooms

Release Date:
May 7, 2021

CHICAGO – The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM) announced today that the cities of Owen and Abbotsford have been awarded Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) funds to develop multi-use community tornado safe rooms.

The city of Owen received $1,923,335 to build a safe room that will provide safety from severe wind and tornadic events to the entire student body and staff of Owen-Withee public schools, residents in nearby areas, and patrons of the 15 nearby businesses.

The city of Abbotsford received $2,186,557 to develop a safe room that will provide safety from severe wind and tornadic events to the entire student body at Abbotsford Public Schools and nearby residents.

“The Hazard Mitigation Assistance grant programs provide funding for activities that reduce disaster losses and protect life and property from future disasters,” said Kevin M. Sligh, acting regional administrator, FEMA Region 5. “These safe rooms will be an important asset to help keep kids and residents protected during dangerous, severe weather events in these communities.”

“Facilities such as these are an important addition to any community and will help save lives,” said Dr. Darrell L. Williams, Wisconsin Emergency Management Administrator. “Wisconsin is thankful to FEMA for providing funding for these important projects in Owen and Abbotsford.”

PDM provides grants to state and local governments to implement long-term hazard mitigation measures. This year marks the end of the PDM program, which will be replaced by the Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities Program (BRIC). To learn more about BRIC or FEMA’s other Hazard Mitigation Assistance programs, visit www.fema.gov/grants/mitigation.

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FEMA's mission is helping people before, during, and after disasters.