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Does Your Community have a FEMA-Approved Hazard Mitigation Plan?

Devastation after a disaster, with damaged buildings, debris, and vehicles.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) invests in communities’ pre-hazard mitigation projects included in local governments’ approved hazard mitigation plans (HMP). Development of plans can play directly into community risk reduction needs many localities may struggle to meet.

Initially fielded by the states, HMPs may be approved for counties, cities, and special districts on a rolling five-year basis. Multiple jurisdictions often pursue a shared plan, known as a multijurisdictional HMP, to spread cost burdens for interested entities while also seeking to cover their operational region to the greatest extent possible.

Each HMP must assess and evaluate the range of hazards and risks posed to the covered communities, describe planning for included projects, outline involvement of partnering governments and organizations, demonstration of cost effectiveness, and include strategies for maintenance and upkeep of projects. These plans are often integrated with other risk reduction efforts locally and with state planning efforts.

Special districts – and all units of local government – must secure a FEMA-approved HMP in order to be locally eligible for most assistance not directly associated with the aftermath of a disaster.

These programs could cover between 75 and 90 percent of a project cost depending and the socioeconomics and resiliency of a community. Those programs requiring an HMP include the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program-Post Fire, Hazard Mitigation Grant Program projects, Building Resilient Infrastructure Communities (BRIC) projects, the Safeguarding Tomorrow Revolving Loan Fund, and Flood Mitigation Assistance projects.

Boards of special districts and local organizations providing fire protection, rescue, ambulance, and other emergency services are in a unique position to engage with fellow elected officials and local offices to collaborate on HMP success, as these emergency services districts are centerpieces of most emergency, hazard, or other response needs.

Follow this link to an interactive map of jurisdictions with active, pending, lapsed, or no plans. Special district leaders in communities without an active HMP are encouraged to consider HMP development, especially if services are provided in hazard-prone areas.

Learn more about how to develop a Hazard Mitigation Plan using FEMA’s most recent guide to local mitigation planning.

Questions? Contact Cole Arreola-Karr, NAEFO Executive Director, at

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