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First round of Hazard Mitigation Grants announced

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Posted at 3:21 PM, Nov 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-18 16:21:14-05

The first installment in Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) funding has been allocated for Louisiana parishes impacted by Hurricane Laura.

Gov. John Bel Edwards and the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP) today announced that $40 million dollars in HMGP funding will be available for 21 parishes in Round 1 based on FEMA Individual Assistance Program data.

Additional rounds of funding will be announced in the near future for these parishes and other parishes that are declared for FEMA Public Assistance. Additional rounds of funding may also incorporate regional projects in coordination with the Louisiana Watershed Initiative (www.watershed.la.gov).

The total HMGP funding for Hurricane Laura is estimated to be $130 million.

Funding through the federal HMGP can be used on projects that potentially save lives and reduce property loss. The goal is to reduce or eliminate long-term risk to life and property by lessening the impact of a disaster. Hazard mitigation is the only phase of emergency management specifically dedicated to breaking the cycle of damage, reconstruction and repeat damage.

“We appreciate FEMA working with GOHSEP to make this initial funding available to help protect the citizens of Louisiana,” said GOHSEP Director Jim Waskom. “As communities continue the hard work on recovery, this funding can be another helpful part of that process. Examples of typical mitigation activities include elevation, reconstruction or acquisition of flood-prone structures and converting land to green space, localized drainage improvements, safe room construction, wind retrofit of structures, and emergency power for critical facilities. GOHSEP will work with each parish to develop a priority project list for this first installment and the remaining HMGP funding.”

Here is a parish-by-parish breakdown of the funding available for the first allocation:

Calcasieu Parish $19,722,953
Cameron Parish $5,675,550
Beauregard Parish $2,188,261
Rapides Parish $2,054,418
Vernon Parish $1,338,771
Jefferson Davis Parish $1,209,017
Allen Parish $1,019,848
Grant Parish $878,709
Ouachita Parish $853,441
Natchitoches Parish $580,376
Acadia Parish $489,345
Sabine Parish $474,734
Winn Parish $469,378
Vermilion Parish $465,460
St. Landry $435,220
Lincoln Parish $380,210
Caddo Parish $378,251
Jackson Parish $362,293
Union Parish $355,175
Morehouse Parish $343,816
La Salle Parish $324,777

HMGP is authorized by Section 404 of Stafford Act, 42 U.S.C. 5170c and is available when authorized under a Presidential major disaster declaration. The amount of funding available to the State is calculated by FEMA based on a percentage of the estimated Federal assistance provided after a disaster as outlined in 44 CFR 206.432(b). GOHSEP mitigation staff are poised to provide assistance and expertise to communities and eligible entities in project identification, sub application development, programmatic/policy guidance, planning, grants management, monitoring and closeout of activities.