(Hauppauge, NY-October 24, 2012) Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone today announced that the Suffolk County Office of Emergency Management has been awarded $533,000 by FEMA’s Pre-Disaster Mitigation Competitive grant program. The funds will assist the Office of Emergency Management with updating and renewing the County-wide Hazard Mitigation Plan.
“Suffolk County has experienced 5 major disasters since 2007 and we are very thankful to have such an effective planning team in place with our Town and Village Partners,” said County Executive Bellone. “We now have an opportunity to update our Hazard Mitigation Plan, in collaboration with participating towns and villages, in an effort to continue to identify policies and actions that can be implemented over the long term to reduce risk and future losses when disasters occur.”
The Federal Emergency Management Agency requires every municipality to have an approved Hazard Mitigation Plan. The plan should be developed in coordination with towns and villages and provides for mitigation planning and implementation efforts from local municipalities. Those municipalities who have a Hazard Mitigation Plan in place are eligible to receive hazard mitigation construction and education grants. As disasters occur, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) also makes a percentage of the total damage amounts incurred available to local governments having an approved Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP) for implementing rebuilding projects.
An annual Hazard Mitigation Assistance Program round of grant funding is open to all jurisdictions having an approved Plan. “Since it’s approval, millions of dollars in Hazard Mitigation Grant funding have been awarded to Smithtown, Riverhead and the County itself,” said Bellone.