FEMA Announces Hazard Mitigation Assistance Grants

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is making funding available for communities to mitigate damage from natural disasters and hazards.  The Pre-Disaster Mitigation Program and Flood Mitigation Assistance Programs provide funding for projects that move property out of harm’s way, improve property and infrastructure so that it can better withstand natural hazards, and help communities plan future development to be more resilient.

Commonly funded mitigation activities include:

  • Acquisition – commonly known as a “buyout” is the most permanent form of mitigation. It removes the home completely and the land is converted into open space (e.g. a park). The acquisition process is strictly voluntary.
  • Dry Floodproofing – techniques applied to keep structures temporarily watertight (e.g. sealing a structure to keep floodwaters out)
  • Elevation – involves physically raising an existing structure to the base flood elevation level or higher
  • Minor Localized Flood Reduction – lessens the frequency or severity of flooding by creating retention/detention basins

The deadline for application is August 28, 2015 at 3 pm.  Municipalities interested in applying should contact CVRPC or the Vermont Division of Emergency Management & Homeland Security (DEMHS) at the contacts below.  We will discuss further details of the program and your proposed project.

Ray Dougherty, State Hazard Mitigation Officer
Vermont Division of Emergency Management & Homeland Security (DEMHS)
103 South Main Street
Waterbury, VT 05671-2101
Tel (802) 241-5258 (office)
Email: ray.doherty@state.vt.us

Gail Aloisio
Assistant Planner
Central Vermont Regional Planning Commission

Waitsfield Local Hazard Mitigation Plan – Seeking Public Comment


Download the Waitsfield Local Hazard Mitigation Plan 2015

The Town of Waitsfield is working to create a plan for reducing the impacts of disasters in the community.  With the assistance of the Central Vermont Regional Planning Commission, officials and responders have drafted a Hazard Mitigation Plan to be approved by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).  Area residents are invited to provide feedback on the plan by contacting Gail Aloisio, CVRPC Planner at aloisio@cvregion.com or 802-229-0389.  The public may also provide comment at the June 15th Waitsfield Selectboard Meeting, scheduled for 7 pm.

Waitsfield’s Hazard Mitigation Plan identifies several strategies and projects for the community to pursue over the next five years.  These include managing rainwater run off throughout the Mad River Valley to reduce the likelihood of flood damage, and determining the causes of flooding and erosion in and upstream of Waitsfield Village.

Hazard Mitigation Planning is a measure that municipalities can take to reduce local costs for infrastructure repair after a disaster.  By completing a FEMA Hazard Mitigation Plan, the Town will meet requirements to be granted a lower local contribution rate when using Federal disaster assistance funds.  Hazard Mitigation Planning allows communities to identify projects that reduce the impacts and costs of disasters to property by moving it out of harm’s way, improving infrastructure, or educating property owners.

Announcing 2015 Downtown and Village Center Tax Credits

Vermont’s Downtown and Village Center tax credit program is one of the primary benefits of Downtown and Village Center designation, and supports revitalization seen in community centers across the state.

In 2015, $2,200,000 in state income tax credits are available to projects that enhance the historic character and improve building safety of older and historic commercial buildings in these designated communities. The credits support general rehabilitation work, code compliance work, data and network wiring, and exterior improvements, and may be combined with the federal program.

This year, legislative changes to the program include updates to make the tax credits more useful and effective. A new tax credit, of up to $40,000, is now available for affordable elevators known as LULAs (Limited Use Limited Application), and the cap for state building code-required improvements increases from $25,000 to $50,000.

Applications for the next round of tax credits are due July 1, 2015 by 4:30 pm and the Vermont Downtown Board will make is allocation decisions when it meets July 27, 2015.

The application is now available on the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development website. Applications can be submitted electronically to caitlin.corkins@state.vt.us or to:

Caitlin Corkins

State of Vermont

Division for Community Planning & Revitalization

One National Life Drive

Davis Building, 6th Floor

Montpelier, VT 05620-0501