It’s been a little more than two months, September 30, 2020, since FEMA opened the application period for the Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) funding opportunity. This year there is more than $660 million available through two competitive grant programs—the Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) program at $160 million, and the Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) pre-disaster hazard mitigation program at $500 million. The deadline to apply is 3:00 PM ET on January 29, 2021

Both the FMA and BRIC programs provide states, local communities, tribes, and territories funding for eligible mitigation activities to strengthen our nation’s ability to build a “culture of preparedness” by reducing disaster losses and protecting life and property from future disaster damages. 

Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) Grant Program

Funds from the FMA program can be used for projects that reduce or eliminate the risk of repetitive flood damage to buildings insured by the National Flood Insurance Program. FEMA chooses recipients based on the applicant’s ranking of the project and the eligibility and cost-effectiveness of the project. 

Building Resilient Infrastructure & Communities Grant Program

BRIC supports states, local communities, tribes, and territories as they undertake hazard mitigation projects, reducing the risks they face from disasters and natural hazards. BRIC is a new FEMA pre-disaster hazard mitigation program that replaces the existing Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) program. According to FEMA, the BRIC program’s guiding principles are “supporting communities through capability- and capacity-building; encouraging and enabling innovation; promoting partnerships; enabling large projects; maintaining flexibility; and providing consistency.”

Whether you apply for one or both grants, it’s important to remember that FEMA requires state, local, tribal, and territorial governments to develop and adopt hazard mitigation plans as a condition for receiving certain types of non-emergency disaster assistance, including funding for hazard mitigation assistance