The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) granted the Puerto Rican government’s request to extend the application period for funds under the Agency’s Risk Mitigation Grants Program, known as from HMGP, until April 30, 2022. These funds help reduce the risk of loss of life. and property from future disasters.
To date, more than $ 1 billion has been approved to help increase the island’s resilience through mitigation work, FEMA said in a statement. These mitigation proposals include $ 5.5 million to the Puerto Rico Permit Management Office to review and adopt updated building codes in Puerto Rico. Another $ 28.6 million has been awarded to the Puerto Rico Planning Board for the first phase of a project that aims to increase staff and resources to enforce the building code.
Other projects such as the improvement of sewers, drainage and pumping stations in the municipality of Loiza will be made possible with funds from HMGP.
âWe are committed to working closely with the government of Puerto Rico as the island’s historic recovery continues. FEMA recognizes the efforts of the local government to move these projects forward and the challenges faced as a result of the pandemic. Understanding the complexity of this disaster, our goal is to continue providing support so that the island can take advantage of this unique opportunity to rebuild stronger, âsaid FEMA Federal Disaster Recovery Coordinator Puerto Rico , JosÃ© G. Baquero.
FEMA staff will provide technical assistance to the government of Puerto Rico to help maximize the availability of HMGP funds, as needed. This includes assistance with project requests, cost sharing, and other requirements to access these funds.
This is the fourth extension of the HMGP application period, and FEMA reserves two additional options to extend the deadline until October 31, 2022. These additional extensions are contingent on the completion of specific milestones by the government of Puerto Rico, including progress reports and detailed lists of priority projects.
Manuel A. Laboy Rivera, Executive Director of COR3, noted that âthis deadline extension will give us more time to maximize available federal funds and to work and submit more solid project proposals, including production-related projects. of electricity which depend on a technical study. currently run by the US Department of Energy.
According to the federal government, Puerto Rico has access to a total of $ 4 billion in mitigation funds, of which $ 3 billion is FEMA HMGP funds and $ 1 billion is local funding. All HMGP funds go to the Central Office for Recovery, Reconstruction and Resilience, which is responsible for ensuring that all repayments meet legal, regulatory, and programmatic requirements established by FEMA.