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Following damages across the state last summer, Vermont received a Federal Disaster Declaration (DR-4330) to assist in recovering from the disaster. With this declaration, a new Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) funding period is now open. A link to the application and instructions is here.

The HMGP program is funded through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and is administered by VEM on behalf of the state. Federal funds are available to cover up to 75% of approved project costs; however, the applicant town is responsible for a 25% local match requirement. Typical hazard mitigation projects include mitigation of local roads and bridges, home acquisition (buyout), structural elevations or relocations, replacement of undersized culverts, mitigation outreach and education, etc. Project proposals do not need to be directly connected to damages incurred from the most recent declared disaster.

Eligibility requirements:

  1. Communities must have a FEMA approved and adopted local hazard mitigation plan. We will accept applications from towns currently lacking an approved mitigation plan, but FEMA will not release awarded project funds unless the mitigation plan has been approved by FEMA and adopted. Towns lacking an approved plan must indicate on their HMGP application that they commit to completing a local mitigation plan within 12 months of application submittal; they can also contact their local Regional Planning Commission for assistance.
  2. Communities must be in good standing with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), if a special flood hazard area (SFHA) has been identified in the community and if the proposed project is located within the SFHA. Please contact the Agency of Natural Resources state floodplain coordinator, Rob Evans at rob.evans@vermont.gov for additional information on applying for NFIP membership.
  3. Communities must have an adopted Local Emergency Operations Plan (LEOP) in place. If a town currently lacks an LEOP, HMGP applications will be accepted but funds may not be released until the local EOP is in place. For assistance with LEOP development, towns may contact their local Regional Planning Commission.
  4. HMGP applications must be completed in their entirety, including maps, list of alternative proposals, engineering plans, hydrology studies (if needed) and a full benefit-cost analysis (BCA) in the FEMA-approved format, if applicable. If you need help in completing the BCA, contact your local Regional Planning Commission. Some BCA assistance is also available from VEM staff by appointment.

If you wish to apply for HMGP funding, please submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) to VEM. The LOI should include a brief description of your proposal and the total estimated cost of your project. LOIs are strongly encouraged, but not required.

Please submit LOIs and completed applications to:

Lauren Oates, State Hazard Mitigation Officer
Vermont Emergency Management
45 State Drive
Waterbury, VT 05671-1300.

Applications should be submitted in hard copy (paper application) and in electronic format such as a scanned PDF file. Applications will not be accepted if submitted past the deadline. HMGP funds are awarded on a competitive basis and all applications are subject to review and selection by the state mitigation project selection committee and FEMA. Contact Lauren Oates at 802)-241-5363 or lauren.oates@vermont.gov with questions regarding HMGP or any other FEMA mitigation grant program.

The application deadline for this round of HMGP funding will be in March 2018.