FEMA's Pre-Disaster Mitigation Program: Overview and Issues [July 10, 2009]   [open pdf - 268KB]

"Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM), as federal law and a program activity, began in 1997. Congress established a pilot program, which FEMA [Federal Emergency Management Agency] named 'Project Impact,' to test the concept of investing prior to disasters to reduce the vulnerability of communities to future disasters. P.L. 106-390, the Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000, authorized the PDM program in law as Section 203 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act. From its beginnings as 'Project Impact' to its current state, the PDM program has grown in its level of appropriated resources and the scope of participation nationwide. Along with that growth have come issues for Congressional consideration, including the approach for awarding grant funds, the eligibility of certain applicants, the eligibility of certain projects, the degree of commitment by state and local governments, and related questions. Authorization for the PDM program expires on September 30, 2009. In the 111th Congress, Representative Oberstar and other sponsors introduced H.R. 1746 to re-authorize the program for an additional three years at $250 million per year and to remove the sunset provision. The bill would also increase the minimum amount each state can receive from $500,000 to $575,000. H.R. 1746 includes provisions that have been part of appropriations statutes that award funds both through a formula (with, as noted, a minimum amount available per state) as well as a competitive process for the majority of the funds."

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CRS Report for Congress, RL34537
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