FEMA. Mitigation Minute for May 2, 2023. Kentucky Makes History with FEMA Buyout Program. FEMA recently awarded $29.9 million to the Commonwealth of Kentucky to buy and remove more than 173 flood damaged homes. For many residents, the thought of selling land that has been home for generations can be a heartbreaking concept. The money awarded to residents will provide them a means to live in a safer place. See the story of a generational Perry County resident: link. The property acquisition projects occurred in the wake of the July 2022 Eastern Kentucky flooding that swept through 14 counties, killing 45 people and displacing thousands of residents. The communities that were ravaged by the flood faced the unfortunate situation of having to make difficult decisions about how to rebuild their lives. The buyout projects will protect the community from the direct impact of severe storm events and provide a long-term solution to existing and future hazardous conditions. From the start of the flooding event, within 3 months 13 properties were identified and the commonwealth had awarded $2.7 million; within 6 months 173 properties had been identified and the commonwealth had awarded nearly $30 million. At this pace, Kentucky is making rapid progress towards the acquisition of approximately 520 properties, and doing so on a faster timetable than is normally possible. FEMA property acquisition process. Learn how the acquisition process works. Step by step process outlining the process: step one the property owner experiences damage and is interested in selling their property to the government. The property owner contacts the local municipality to discuss options; step two: the local government has a decision to make. They can choose to pursue the acquisition and apply to the state to get funds, or they may decide not to acquire the property; step three: the state government gets involved. If the local government requests funds for a property acquisition, the state will consider its options. It can apply for FEMA funds or else consider other funding sources; step four: the federal government (FEMA) reviews property acquisition applications and then makes selections and awards based on funding availability and program requirements; step five: the state government gets involved for the issuance of the state/local agreement, which clearly defines the parameters for putting the project into action. From there, the local government can proceed with the project; and, finally, step six: the local government gets involved. Once the plan for putting the project into action is approved, the final step is to begin the acquisition project. These property acquisitions are happening quickly because of Kentucky's proactive approach, strong partnerships and excellent coordination. Property acquisition projects help communities purchase flood-prone properties, remove buildings, and return land to green space. FEMA's Hazard Mitigation Grant Program will pay 75% of the acquisition costs and the rest will be paid by the Commonwealth of Kentucky and or state and local governments. During the past 30 years, FEMA's Hazard Mitigation Assistance grant programs have obligated more than $3.6 billion for property acquisitions. Property owners volunteer to participate in acquisitions projects. No one is required to sell their property. Learn more about these Kentucky severe storms, flooding, landslides and mudslides. 


Upcoming Procurements Under Grants Training: Mitigation Grants-- On Thurs., May 4, 2023, from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. ET, FEMA will host a Procurement Under Grants Training: Mitigation Grants virtual training covering a variety of procurement under grant concepts, frequent compliance issues and examples, and user-friendly resources to ensure recipients and subrecipients can maximize their use of grant funding. FEMA encourages award recipients and subrecipients, including state, local, tribal, and territorial government personnel; nonprofit organization staff; eligible private entities; other non-federal entities; and FEMA staff to attend.

To learn more and register today, visit fema.gov. There is no limit to the number of participants in each training, and there will be two additional Mitigation Grant trainings on Thurs., July 20 and Thurs., Oct. 19, 2023. If you have never used the Adobe Connect platform, please test your connection in advance.

FEMA Region 3 Coffee Break Webinars Tickets: Many questions will arise when writing the scope of work for your next hazard mitigation plan update. Do I need contract support? What is my budget? Am I applying for funding? This webinar explores how to set expectations in your scope of work for the plan developer, state planner, FEMA reviewer, and most importantly— your community. The first session will be on Weds., May 17, 2023, and these will run through November. Get your tickets.

Call for Abstracts: FEMA's Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) Division is opening a Call for Abstracts for the annual Hazard Mitigation (HM) Partners Workshop. The Call for Abstracts period runs from Mon., April 10, to Mon., May 15. The 2023 HM Partners Workshop will be held from Mon., Oct. 16 to Thurs., Oct. 19, 2023. This year's theme is All Together for Climate Resilience Communities: Equity, Partnerships, Capability and Capacity. Find out how to submit an abstract by visiting Hazard Mitigation Assistance Grants | FEMA.gov.

Energy Storage and Microgrids for Energy Resilience and Reliability Webinar Series: FEMA is co-hosting a series of energy storage webinars in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Electricity Energy Storage Program and Sandia National Laboratories. Learn more and register today. These webinars have been held every Weds., since April 12, and the last one will be on May 3, 2023, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. ET.