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VEM: FEMA Public Assistance DR4720

July 25, 2023

Road washout

From: Vermont Local Roads Program on behalf of Canarecci, Kim Kim.Canarecci@VERMONT.GOV (Vermont Local Roads Program via LISTSERV.VERMONTLOCALROADS.ORG)
Mon 7/24/2023 1:14 PM

Still fielding some of the same questions, so please send this out to all your contacts.- Thank you

  1. When will FEMA contact me? While we have a Disaster, we still do not have a declared federal disaster to qualify counties for Public Assistance. My teams along with FEMA were out in the field to qualify damages to meet each county threshold. At this time, we believe that FEMA will declare all counties for this flood event EXCEPT for Grand Isle, Franklin, and Essex. When I get this final validation, I will schedule and conduct Statewide applicant briefings in declared counties. These meetings will be announced far and wide and you should attend to learn more about FEMA Public Assistance and how to apply, as well as next steps. 

  2. If you are wanting to submit a request to be in the disaster now ahead of these briefings and if you are in a county other than Grand Isle, Essex or Franklin, please log into the FEMA Grants Portal and submit through your current FEMA account. If your town/agency does not yet have one, please create one. Do not create a duplicate account for your town or agency!! SELECT DR4720 to be a part of the flooding event.

  3. Here is a fun guide to learn about the FEMA Grants Portal if you haven’t already been in it. Applicant Quick Guide Grants Portal Account and RPA (Mar 28 2020).pdf (

  4. Several towns keep asking when they can do their permanent repairs, NOW….Make all repairs following proper procurement as well as meeting your State Codes and Road Standards as well as obtaining if required your River Stream Alteration Permit.

  5. Wait patiently. FEMA will only be in touch AFTER you are an APPLICANT in the FEMA Grants Portal and after you have attended an applicant’s briefing. Keep making repairs and documentation.

  6. Equipment and Building damages must be submitted to INSURANCE first. FEMA is a last resort for funds. If you have a road project currently approved for under a different grant source, that is not FEMA eligible. 

  7. If you choose to REPLACE a bridge that is only damaged, FEMA will only cover the cost of the repair to damage and will not cover the replacement. You can still replace it, but should know that you will be on the hook for the costs above the repair.

  8. You must have at least $3800 in costs to be FEMA eligible.

  9. Proper procurement of contractors is required at this point we are past that emergency phase.

  10. FEMA has a policy guide to help answer MANY questions regarding the Public Assistance process as well as eligibility. I’ve sent this out before, it’s a 277 page document that is worth looking through. Public Assistance Program and Policy Guide Version 4 (

  11. FEMA does not design your roads and will not tell you what to do on your roads. If you have no idea how to make a repair, reach out to your Vtrans District for guidance.

  12. Private non-profits that are critical and non-critical must submit to their insurance first as well as submit all 501c tax documentation into the FEMA grants portal for review. If you are a non-critical nonprofit, you must also submit to SBA first. Below is a chart of nonprofits considered FEMA critical. Link to Table of PNP Eligible Critical Services

Thank you,

Kimberly Canarecci

Vermont State Public Assistance Officer