HOUSTON—State Representative Dwayne Bohac (Houston-District 138) joined Governor Greg Abbott and local leaders at Houston City Hall this week as the Governor announced the availability of new funding for hazard mitigation projects along the Gulf Coast following the devastation of Hurricane Harvey. This allocation of funding from FEMA will provide an estimated $1 billion for hazard and flood mitigation projects designed to both help Texas rebuild and reduce the risk of future damage from flooding and hurricanes.
“Harris County residents and our Gulf Coast neighbors experienced one of the worst flooding disasters in U.S. history when Hurricane Harvey came ashore in August,” said Rep. Bohac. “Thanks to the leadership of our Governor, along with the continued hard work of our congressional delegation in Washington and our state, county and city officials, these funds will go a long way towards our ongoing mission to rebuild and restore Harris County.”
The hazard mitigation funding will be operated by the Texas Division of Emergency Management, and starting this week, cities and counties can submit applications for projects.
"Texas has maintained from the beginning that we would rebuild in ways that reduce the risk of future damage to property and lives, and that’s exactly what these funds are for,” said Governor Abbott. “While this announcement is another important step toward recovery, we still have more work ahead of us, and I want to reassure every Texan impacted by Harvey that we will not let up until your homes and communities are restored.”
According to the Office of the Governor, the new hazard mitigation funds can be used in a number of ways, including:
- Buyouts and elevations of flood prone properties
- Drainage and reservoir projects that eliminate future flooding
- Projects to lessen the frequency or severity of flooding
- Flood risk reduction projects (dams, retention basins, levees, floodwalls)
- Large-scale channeling of waterways
Of the estimated $1 billion that Texas will receive, $500 million in funding is available immediately, while the remaining funding will be provided on or before August 25, 2018. Additional funds may also become available as FEMA continues to process and approve project requests from Texas cities and counties.
In addition to the hazard mitigation funds announced this week, the Governor and Bohac praised the recent passage of disaster-relief funding totaling $89 billion by Congress, including plans to construct a third major reservoir near the Barker and Addicks reservoirs to prevent future flooding.