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Hazard Mitigation Grant Program Funds

Story by: FEMA

JOINT FEDERAL, STATE, LOCAL PUBLIC NOTICE October 20, 2020

The Federal Emergency Management Agency and Florida Division of Emergency Management have received the following application for Federal grant funding. Final notice is hereby given of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) consideration to provide funding in the form of Hazard Mitigation Grant Program. Funds will be provided in accordance with Section 404 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, Public Law 93-288, as amended.

Under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), federal actions must be reviewed and evaluated for feasible alternatives and for social, economic, historic, environmental, legal, and safety considerations. Under Executive Order (EO) 11988 and EO 11990 FEMA is required to consider alternatives to and to provide public notice of any proposed actions in or affecting floodplains or wetlands. EO 12898 also requires FEMA to provide the opportunity for public participation in the planning process and to consider potential impacts to minority or low-income populations.

Funding for the proposed projects will be conditional upon compliance with all applicable federal, tribal, state and local laws, regulations, floodplain standards, permit requirements and conditions.

Applicant:
Washington County

Project Titles:
Washington County, HMGP Buy-Out Program, Acquisition and Demolition
Project Number 4399-387
Project Number 4399-105

Location of Proposed Work:
The area affected by this project consists of homes in the following locations:

Peach St
5th St
Main St
Celebrity Cir
Rolling Pines Rd
Childress Ln
Radcliff Cir
Dawkins St
Riddle Ct
Wages Pond Rd
Pine Ridge Dr

Proposed Work and Purpose:
The County proposes to purchase properties through a voluntary buy-out program of flood prone locations throughout the county. The acquisition and demolition project are comprised of 24 parcels consisting of 74.84 acres and 24 dwellings. In addition, many of the properties contain multiple outbuildings. The County would need to obtain an appraisal of the property followed by contract negotiations with the homeowner. Following the closing, a survey and environmental testing would be completed at the property. Environmental remediation would be completed if any hazardous materials were discovered. Lastly would be demolition of the structure(s) followed by debris and slab removal, once completed this the property would then be converted to green space and deed-restricted in accordance with FEMA program requirements pursuant to 44 CFR 206.434 (e). The completed work would comply with all applicable Federal, State and Local Rules and Regulations.

Project Alternatives:
The alternatives to the project that have been and will be considered are 1) the no action alternative and 2) A possible alternative to the proposed project would be to elevate the structures that are currently below the base flood elevation. The likelihood of damage from flooding would be greatly reduced if the structures were elevated above the base flood elevation.

These alternatives to the proposed project are not viable because under:

Alternative 1) If the proposed project is not completed, the 24 residential structures will be locked in a cycle of repetitive damages every time there is a flooding event, and the hazard to life safety of the residents and first responders will remain due to exposure to the flood waters.
Alternative 2) Access issues would remain unchanged if no other measures were taken to prevent flooding in this area. New construction would likely be required due to the age of the majority of these structures. This alternative will only protect private property, the hazard to life safety of the residents and first responders will remain due to exposure to the flood waters.

Comment Period:
Comments are solicited from the public; local, state or federal agencies; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of the proposed project. The comments should be made in writing and addressed to the Florida Division of Emergency Management, Bureau of Recovery and Mitigation, 2555 Shumard Oak Blvd., Tallahassee, FL 32399-2100. These are due within 30 days of this notice (Nov. 19, 2020). The State will forward comments to applicable regulatory agencies as needed. Interested persons may submit comments, obtain more detailed information about the proposed action, or request a copy of the findings by contacting:

Karen Shaw, Grants Coordinator, Washington County (850) 638-6058
(850) 638-6058 kshaw@washingtonfl.com

Cary Helmuth, State Lead Environmental Specialist, Florida Division of Emergency Management (850) 815-4514
(850) 815-4514 Cary.Helmuth@em.myflorida.com

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