FEMA announces mitigation program changes

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) released changes to the Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) Guidance program documentation, the International Association of Emergency Managers reported Thursday.

The changes allow for areas to be more streamlined and more efficient within the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP), the Flood Mitigation Assistance program, and the Pre-Disaster Mitigation Program.

Updates include application review expedition, implementation of new methods to determine cost estimation, and the publication of clearer eligibility requirements. Other changes affect sections relating to climate change and general resilience planning, benefit-to-cost analysis, and environmental planning and historic presentations and clarifications.

Within the area of resilience and climate-change planning, FEMA suggests that communities calculate benefits and costs associated with open space or riparian areas and rising sea levels. FEMA also calls for the accurate budgeting and forecasting of needed funds from the HMGP, and encourages communities to consider individuals with disabilities when submitting applications.

The period of performance for the PDM program was also increased from two to three years, and FEMA now requires individual states update mitigation plans every five years, a change from three years.

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Federal Emergency Management Agency 500 C Street Southwest Washington, DC 20024

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