KAMM Updates

Kentucky Watches, Warnings or Advisories  – Weather Alerts Follow the alerts, link here.

 
 

Time to Renew KAMM Membership

Join KAMM for 2019!  Link to Join KAMM.

 

KAMM’s 15th Anniversary!  

2019 KAMM Conference

KAMM XV: Celebrate the Past, Inspire the Future

Lake Barkley State Resort Park

September 17-19, 2019

September 16, 2019 – Pre-conference Workshop and Activities

 

Conference Registration Open!

 

FEMA Seeks Public Comment for New Pre-Disaster Hazard Mitigation Grant Program

May 20, 2019

Today, the FEMA is announcing an invitation for the public to comment on the development and implementation of Disaster Recovery Reform Act (DRRA) Section 1234: National Public Infrastructure Pre-Disaster Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP).  This Section is part of the Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization Act which became law in October 2018, there were more than 50 provisions passed important reforms to federal disaster programs.

Communities from all levels of government federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial, as well as key stakeholders, including private businesses, citizens, vulnerable and at-risk populations, critical infrastructure sectors, and non-profit, academic, and philanthropic organizations are encouraged to provide comment.  The development of the Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) program – and how as a nation we can deliver those outcomes – is vital.

This change will allow FEMA to invest in projects that drive risk reduction and build capability for communities and is consistent with the three overarching strategic goals in FEMA’s 2018-2022 Strategic Plan: Build a Culture of Preparedness, Ready the Nation for Catastrophic Disasters, and Reduce the Complexity of FEMA.  FEMA and its partners specifically want to discuss and share ideas about Section 1234.

For more information on DRRA, visit www.fema.gov/disaster-recovery-reform-act-2018.

Comments will be accepted from May 20 through July 15, 2019, on IdeaScale at https://fema.ideascale.com/a/campaign-home/61112 or by email at BUILDBRIC@fema.dhs.gov.

See Webinar info below.

 
 

$6 Billion in Loans Available for Water Infrastructure Projects

March 29, 2019

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the availability of approximately $6 billion in credit that could finance over $12 billion in water infrastructure projects through the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) program.  Prospective borrowers seeking WIFIA credit assistance must submit a letter of interest.  For this round, EPA is prioritizing construction-ready projects in three areas: reducing exposure to lead and addressing emerging contaminants in drinking water systems; updating aging infrastructure; and implementing water reuse and recycling.

WIFIA credit assistance can be used for a wide range of projects, including:

  • drinking water treatment and distribution projects;
  • wastewater conveyance and treatment projects;
  • enhanced energy efficiency projects at drinking water and wastewater facilities;
  • desalination, aquifer recharge, alternative water supply, and water recycling projects; and
  • drought prevention, reduction, or mitigation projects.

EPA will accept letters of interest (LOI) from prospective borrowers  until July 5, 2019

New resources are available to assist prospective borrowers, including:

 
 

Webinars and Training 

 

Announcing NFIP 101 Webinar 

Kentucky NFIP staff will be offering a free 2-hour introductory webinar covering the basics of the NFIP and floodplain management in Kentucky.  This training will focus on the key elements of the NFIP such as programmatic goals and requirements, floodplain maps and flood studies, local ordinances, floodplain permitting basics, local coordinator duties, elevation certificates, tools available to floodplain managers, best practices, and Community Rating System (CRS) basics.

NFIP 101 Webinar 
Tue, June 25, 2019 – 2:00 – 4:00 PM EDT

Click here to Register for the workshop.

You must register for this webinar.  Deadline June 24 COB. 


Invitation to Spruce up!  Using green roofs and green spaces to beat the heat

What: Spruce up!  Using green roofs and green spaces to beat the heat

When: Thursday,  July 11 2019, 02:00 – 03:30 PM, Eastern

Join this 90-minute webinar to learn how green roofs and other green spaces are being used to address urban heat across the country.  The webinar will highlight the variety of benefits that such practices can bring, such as how green roofs improve air quality and public health in Kansas City.  The event will also feature a national green roof expert and delve into Denver’s recent green building ordinance.

Speakers:

  • Victoria Ludwig: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Heat Island Reduction Program
  • Steve Peck: Green Roofs for Healthy Cities
  • Robyn DeYoung: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Katrina Managan: Denver Department of Public Health and Environment

To register: https://epawebconferencing.acms.com/greeninitiatives/event/registration.html

To learn more about the event, please visit the Heat Island Program website

 
 

2019 Publication, Program Updates and Releases

Technical Bulletins Updates

March 2019

What are the NFIP Technical Bulletins?  FEMA Technical Bulletins (TBs) provide guidance for complying with the minimum National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP) floodplain management requirements pertaining to building performance.  Eleven Bulletins, covering a range of topics, were released from 1993 to 2010.  The Bulletins are primarily for use by state and local officials responsible for interpreting and enforcing building codes and NFIP regulations.  They are also helpful to design professionals, builders, and homeowners.

How are the NFIP Technical Bulletins changing?  The Bulletins are changing to modernize and streamline their content and presentation.  The updated TBs will:

  • incorporate relevant information from the latest International Codes® (I-Codes®) and American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Standards,
  • provide updated guidance and best practices observed from post-disaster assessments
  • address known issues identified by a wide range of stakeholders.

These changes are intended to improve the TBs’ usability, credibility, and content while presenting them in a streamlined format.  Overarching additions will include new introductory text, updated tables, figures, photos, and references along with a section on applicable codes and standards.  All updated TBs will have tables comparing codes/ standards to the NFIP regulations.  The 2018 I-Codes and ASCE 24-14 are used as the base codes and standards with the changes from the 2015 and 2012 I-Codes and ASCE 24-05 referenced.  Incorporating information and references from the most recent consensus codes and standards keep the Technical Bulletins current and aligned with the field’s latest concepts and advances.

Download the Update to NFIP Technical Bulletins.

 
 

National Inventory of Dams Now Available to the Public

February 2019

What once was a highly restricted database that required requesting special access, the National Inventory of Dams (NID), is now open and available for public download.  The NID is a congressionally authorized database documenting dams in the United States and its territories.  It is maintained and published by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and in collaboration with the FEMA aims to obtain more accurate and complete information.

The NID is available at http://nid.usace.army.mil and was populated using the 116th Congressional District information and all charts, queries and maps reflect the most current NID database. State and federal dam regulators provided their data from May to November 2018 for inclusion in the 2018 database.

Major changes to the 2018 NID allow users to download or export certain NID data and to view the hazard potential classification.  State or federal agencies may restrict access to information on dams within their jurisdiction, so for information not published in the NID, USACE recommends consulting the agency exercising responsibility over the dam.  The hazard potential classification, as published in the NID, does not reflect the condition of a dam.  That information can be found in the condition assessment, which is available to approved government users.  Historically, the NID has been published every two years.  Starting in 2019, the NID will be updated annually.

The goal of the NID is to include all dams in the U.S. that meet specific criteria, yet, is limited to information that can be gathered and properly interpreted with the given funding.  The NID initially consisted of approximately 45,000 dams, which were gathered from extensive record searches and some feature extraction from aerial imagery.  Since continued and methodical updates have been conducted, data collection has been focused on the most reliable data sources, which are the many federal and state government dam construction and regulation offices and now is up to 90,000 dams.  In most cases, dams within the NID criteria are regulated (construction permit, inspection, and/or enforcement) by federal or state agencies, who have basic information on the dams within their jurisdiction.

The NID consists of dams meeting at least one of the following criteria:

(1) High hazard potential classification – loss of human life is likely if the dam fails;

(2) Significant hazard potential classification – no probable loss of human life but can cause economic loss, environmental damage, disruption of lifeline facilities, or impact other concerns;

(3) Equal or exceed 25 feet in height and exceed 15 acre-feet in storage;

(4) Equal or exceed 50 acre-feet storage and exceed 6 feet in height.

For further information on the National Inventory of Dams visit: https://www.fema.gov/2018-national-inventory-dams.  To access and download the database visit: http://nid.usace.army.mil

 

FEMA Releases State-Led Public Assistance Guide

February 2019

This week, FEMA released the “State-Led Public Assistance Guide”, providing additional resources for recipients to lead some or all aspects of Public Assistance operations for smaller disasters.  State-led Public Assistance maximizes specialized features of the Public Assistance delivery process to enhance the capacity of recipients to achieve local communities’ immediate and long-term recovery goals.  Aligning with FEMA 2018-2022 Strategic Plan, state-led Public Assistance operations preserves federal resources for catastrophic disasters and strengthen the emergency management enterprise to one that is federally supported, state-managed, and locally executed.

The benefits of State-led Public Assistance programs include:

  • Allowing recipients to provide tailored customer service for sub-recipients.
  • Providing opportunities for recipients to enhance or build capabilities to support disaster recovery.
  • Enhancing the recipient role in shaping and achieving desired recovery outcomes.
  • Encouraging recipients to build upon existing relationships and familiarity with their applicant base to increase efficiency throughout grant lifecycle.

Public Assistance provides disaster grant assistance to recipients and sub-recipients to help communities quickly respond to and recover from major disasters or emergencies.  FEMA authorized recipients to lead PA delivery for small, federally declared disasters since 2001, which has resulted in several recipients demonstrating ability to lead Public Assistance operations with varying levels of federal oversight.

 
 

FEMA Releases New Individual Assistance Program and Policy Guide

February 2019

FEMA developed the Individual Assistance Program and Policy Guide (IAPPG), which is an inclusive, single-policy resource for all Individual Assistance (IA) programs.  The new guide consolidates policies for the Individuals and Households Program Fact Sheet, Mass Care and Emergency Assistance, and the Community Services Program into one document.  The guide also replaces the Individuals and Households Program Unified Guidance (IHPUG) as the primary reference resource for IA programs.

The IAPPG provides a comprehensive policy resource for state, local, tribal, and territorial governments, non-governmental partners, and other entities that assist survivors during disasters.  Resources written specifically for disaster survivors can be found at https://www.fema.gov/individual-disaster-assistance.

The IAPPG furthers the goal of reducing the complexity of FEMA as outlined in the agency’s 2018-2022 Strategic Plan.

 
 

After a Disaster: Recovery Assistance for Emergency Service Organizations

February 19, 2019

The FEMA Public Assistance grant program helps emergency service organizations with funding to repair and rebuild facilities after a disaster.  The days following a presidentially declared disaster can be overwhelming for those left to pick up the pieces of their lives.  Disaster survivors who need information on grant programs for homeowners and renters can apply for assistance from FEMA.  However, what about public facilities like your fire or Emergency Medical Services (EMS) departments that are damaged by a disaster?

Good news: FEMA is also there for your emergency services department to help you repair or rebuild your facility.

Your organization may receive FEMA Public Assistance funding for:

  • Debris removal (tree limbs, branches, stumps or trees that are still in place but damaged to the extent they pose an immediate threat).
  • Emergency protective measures (pre-positioning equipment, use of temporary generators and security, such as barricades).
  • Repair, replacement or restoration of disaster-damaged facilities, equipment and apparatus.
  • Eligible costs associated with mutual aid.

In most situations, your headquarters, emergency operations center, dispatch center and other response systems will have the documentation needed to support requests for reimbursement costs.

How much will FEMA pay?  FEMA’s share of assistance is not less than 75 percent of the eligible cost.  The recipient (usually your state) determines how the nonfederal share (up to 25 percent) is split with a sub recipient (your organization).  Volunteer work and donated equipment, supplies and resources may be used to offset the nonfederal share of eligible costs.

Learn more about eligibility, guidelines and the application process for Public Assistance from FEMA.

 
 

FEMA Informs NFIP Participating Communities of Program Modifications

February 2019

The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 directs federal agencies to thoroughly assess the environmental consequences of major federal actions that could significantly affect the environment.  In May 2018, FEMA published a Record of Decision in the Federal Register  to announce its intent to implement the Preferred Alternative program modifications to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). FEMA undertook the preparation of a Nationwide Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (NPEIS) and completed the Record of Decision because changes to the NFIP are considered to be a major federal action. As a first step toward implementation, FEMA is sending an awareness letter to more than 22,000 communities that participate in the NFIP.

The program modifications contained in the Preferred Alternative to the NFIP NPEIS are needed to implement the legislative requirements of the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012, the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014, and to demonstrate compliance with the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  The three primary NFIP component areas are mapping, insurance, and floodplain management.

At this time, NFIP participating communities are not required to implement the program modifications contained in the Record of Decision’s Preferred Alternative.  FEMA is continuing its outreach to ensure communities are aware of the forthcoming changes.  FEMA will continue to develop the necessary policies and processes to implement the program modifications listed in the final NPEIS, and will coordinate with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service.

The final NPEIS, Record of Decision and a copy of the Community Awareness Letter are available on FEMA.gov at https://www.fema.gov/programmatic-environmental-impact-statement.

 
 

New FloodSmart.gov

January 2019

The updates to FloodSmart.gov incorporates social science and website usage research as well as best practices for a streamlined and customer-centric experience.  The next phase of the website launch will include insurance agent toolkits, social media templates, marketing tools, and flood map change toolkits.

For Consumers, the website focuses on flood insurance …

  • Why Buy or Renew
  • How to Buy or Renew
  • Understanding Costs
  • Before and After a Flood

The BIG Cost of Flooding – Interactive Tool

Whether people in your community end up having to repair or replace their building and or its contents, recovering from flood damage is expensive!  Most homeowners’ and renters’ insurance policies do not cover flood damage, so it is important for citizens to speak with their insurance agent or company to find what their policies cover.

To help communicate some of these costs to people, Floodsmart.gov has created an interactive tool to show people the flood recovery costs of several different flood depths for multiple home sizes.  To see the interactive tool, visit https://www.floodsmart.gov/costOfFlooding/index.html.

FloodSmart.gov is the official website of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

 

News from 2018 Worthy of Repeating 

Natural Hazard Mitigation Saves: 2018 Interim Report

New National Institute of Building Sciences study on mitigation finds that modern, regularly updated building codes save lives and protect property.  The National Institute of Building Sciences released the Natural Hazard Mitigation Saves: 2018 Interim Report at its annual conference, “Building Innovation 2019.”

The 2018 interim report updates and expands upon mitigation measures studied in 2005 by evaluating a broad suite of mitigation measures that can inform decision-making around investments to reduce the impacts of natural hazards.

The project team studied four categories of natural hazard mitigation efforts to date:

  1. Design of typical new buildings to exceed certain requirements of the 2015 IBC and IRC, and to conform to the 2015 IWUIC
  2. Design of typical new buildings to comply with the 2018 IBC and IRC, compared with 1990-era design requirements
  3. Mitigation of existing buildings funded by FEMA, EDA, and HUD.
  4. Natural-hazard mitigation for utilities and transportation lifelines.

The study found that adopting the 2018 International Codes generates a national benefit of $11 for every $1 invested.  The I-Codes are the most widely used and adopted set of building safety codes in the world.  This report follows a multi-year study on natural hazard mitigation and comes more than a decade after NIBS’ original report on mitigation.  The project team studied flood risk, hurricane wind hazards and earthquake risk.  They found that the national mitigation benefit-cost ratio associated with code adoption is

  • $6 to $1 for floods,
  • $10 to $1 for hurricanes, and
  • $12 to $1 for earthquakes, with benefits coming through avoided casualties, post-traumatic stress, property damage, business interruptions and insurance premiums.

The results show that all building stakeholders benefit from regularly updated codes—from developers, lenders, tenants and communities.  Communities that consistently meet the latest editions of the I-Codes, culminating in the 2018 editions, have added 30,000 new jobs to the construction-materials industry.

Last year’s interim report also found that adoption of the 2015 International Wildland Urban Interface Code provided a $4 to $1 mitigation benefit against wildfire risk.  These findings demonstrate the importance of regular updates to the building codes and strong code enforcement in order to mitigate damage from natural disasters such as wildfires, earthquakes, hurricanes and flooding.

Download the report here.

 
 

Water Organizations of Kentucky – Water Organizations of Kentucky

August 2018

Kentucky Water Resources Research Institute (KWRRI), created the poster, Water Organizations of Kentucky, to serve as an overview of water organizations and facilitate networking among organizations.  Download here: Water Organizations of Kentucky (PDF, 1pg).

If you would like to purchase a printed copy of the poster, please contact kwrri@uky.edu.

 
 

KAMM Receives 2018 Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador Recognition

November 2018
 
We are very pleased to be recognized by the National Weather Service (NWS) as a Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador for the organization’s support to NWS’ goal of creating a Weather-Ready Nation.  The Weather-Ready Nation Ambassador initiative is an effort to formally recognize NOAA partners who are improving the nation’s readiness against extreme weather, water, and climate events.
 
KAMM promoted NWS efforts in the Community Collaborative Rain Hail, and Snow (CoCoRaHS) network by providing several dozen official CoCoRaHS rain gauges as speaker gifts and door prizes at our 2018 conference at Lake Barkley State Resort Park.  Everyone that received a rain gauge agreed to participate in the CoCoRaHS citizen science network.  Through these efforts, KAMM strengthened an already valuable Weather-Ready Nation partnership. KAMM has collaborated with the NWS offices in Kentucky for nearly 15 years in an effort to promote mitigation of natural hazards in the Commonwealth.
 
Link to a Story Map highlighting our recognition and many others at: https://noaa.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapTour/index.html?appid=38d9ed51a5e14a4b9c32342ea3da06dd.
 
 

FEMA Announces Interim Management Costs Policies

November 15, 2018

FEMA released two interim polices Nov. 15 as part of the Disaster Recovery Reform Act of 2018 (DRRA) implementation.

On Oct. 5, 2018, President Trump signed the DRRA into law.  The legislation contains critical reforms to federal disaster programs.  To begin implementation of these reforms, both the FEMA Public Assistance Management Costs (Interim) Policy and the FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Program Management Costs (Interim) Policy are now available. Follow the linked Policy titles.

Both policies will offer greater flexibility to state, local, tribal, and territorial governments and may allow more funding to manage Hazard Mitigation Grant Program and Public Assistance programs.  Under these interim policies, state, local, tribal, and territorial partners may be allowed higher rates of reimbursement for their management costs when implementing Public Assistance (12 percent) and Hazard Mitigation Grant Program projects (15 percent).

The DRRA defines management costs as indirect costs, direct administrative costs, and any other administrative expenses for a specific project.  These policies will help to simplify the delivery of FEMA’s programs and provides incentives for recipients to practice efficient grants management and complete activities in a timely manner

FEMA worked to develop the interim policies shortly after the law was passed to provide immediate guidance to grant recipients and subrecipients on how they may benefit from the changes to reimbursement for management costs.  FEMA is working through implementation guidance for both interim policies.

Visit https://www.fema.gov/disaster-recovery-reform-act-2018 for more information and to find a summary of each section of the act, as well as the status on FEMA’s implementation.  In total, the law contains more than 50 provisions that require FEMA policy or regulation changes for full implementation.  To view a summary of all the changes in DRRA, click HERE.

 

Story Map Highlights Award-Winning CTP: Kentucky Division of Water Resources

Kentucky CTP Story Map

When it comes to mapping Kentucky’s floodplains, the Kentucky Division of Water (KDOW) is a Cooperating Technical Partner (CTP) with FEMA.  The CTP Program is an innovative approach to creating partnerships between FEMA and other agencies that have the interest and capability to become more active participants in the FEMA flood hazard mapping program.  

In 2018, KDOW was awarded 1st place in the CTP Recognition Program.  The Division was recognized by FEMA for excellence in Communications, Outreach and Program Management for integrating different technologies to communicate flood risk, including virtual reality and live polling during meetings, and for embracing a variety of partnerships.  KDOW’s work has been featured in a story map that is an interactive product that uses GIS maps, narrative text, images and video to showcase CTP work.

View the story map at http://arcg.is/1nqua0 to see some of the great things that the Kentucky Risk MAP team had done over the past several years.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Mitigation Matters!  

Have questions, contact us at help@kymitigation.org.

Don’t forget to join the KAMM group on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.