$11 million in federal funds awarded for climate resiliency projects in NYC following major disaster declaration

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New York Construction Report staff writer

More than $11 million in federal funding is now available to local governments and specific non-profits across the state to support projects aimed at boosting resiliency and reducing the impact of extreme weather events.

Eligible entities can apply through Sept. 13.

Funding, provided through FEMA’s Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, was allocated to New York following President Biden’s Major Disaster Declaration after the extreme weather event in September 2023, which saw over eight inches of rain in parts of Brooklyn and more than six inches in Nassau and Westchester counties within 24 hours.

Since 2012, New York has received about $2 billion in Hazard Mitigation Grant funding to support over 220 projects statewide.

Governor Hochul emphasized the importance of this funding, stating, “From heat waves to historic flooding, we are living in a time of record-breaking weather events which have left many regions across New York State in need of repair. This funding will help to fortify our infrastructure and communities, making them more resilient in the face of climate change.”

Following a Presidential disaster declaration, FEMA’s Hazard Mitigation Grant Program provides states with funding to support local hazard mitigation planning and long-term measures to reduce the loss of life and protect property damaged by natural disasters. Eligible local governments and non-profits can apply for these grants.

Under this program, qualified entities can apply for funding to cover up to 75 percent of the costs for projects that enhance resiliency and reduce the impacts of future extreme weather. Priority will be given to projects in Kings, Nassau, and Westchester counties, which were heavily impacted by the recent flooding. The criteria for prioritization include direct risk reduction to vulnerable populations, addressing climate change and future impacts, mitigating risk to critical infrastructure and repetitive loss structures, and supporting utilities or critical facilities.

Jackie Bray, Commissioner of the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, highlighted the significance of this funding, stating, “As climate change continues to increase the frequency and severity of extreme weather, it is critical that communities have the resources they need to strengthen their resiliency. This funding will play an essential role in that effort by enabling our local partners to implement projects that will protect people, property, and infrastructure.”

The State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services will review applications and provide technical assistance upon request. The application period is open until September 13, 2024. More information on applying for funding and the HMGP process is available on the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services website.

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