Friday, September 29, 2023

Virginia Announces $13.6 Million in Community Flood Preparedness Fund Grant Awards

Rising waters: Coastal flooding is of growing concern across Tidewater Virginia and in other coastal areas worldwide. (WYDaily/ Courtesy of J.D. Loftis from VIMS)
(WYDaily/ Courtesy of J.D. Loftis from VIMS)

RICHMOND — The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) announced $13.6 million in awards from the Virginia Community Flood Preparedness Fund Wednesday.

Twenty-seven applications for flood prevention and protection projects were funded, DCR said in a press release. Funded projects include mitigation, capacity building, planning and studies in communities across the commonwealth.

DCR received 64 applications with grant requests totaling nearly $93 million, it said, noting grant round 3 was initially advertised for $40 million.

Thirty-two proposals totaling $68 million in requests were given a 60-day supplemental review period to allow applicants to correct application deficiencies and submit additional information, DCR said, adding it has been authorized to release an additional $30 million in funding for grant round 3.

“The impacts of flooding are felt across the commonwealth, and Gov. Youngkin has ensured that resiliency and flood mitigation efforts are a priority for this administration,” said Travis Voyles, Virginia’s acting secretary of natural and historic resources and chief resilience officer. “These projects will support important flood protection and resilience efforts in inland and coastal communities across Virginia.”

DCR administers the fund and grant program in cooperation with the Virginia Resources Authority. It oversees the commonwealth’s floodplain management program and is responsible for the development of the Coastal Resilience Master Plan and the Virginia Flood Protection Master Plan.

“We are pleased to award this initial group of grants and look forward to working with applicants who require additional review,” DCR Director Matthew Wells said. “Given the importance of addressing flooding and resilience challenges, and the level of interest in this grant round, we are extending this opportunity broadly to applicants with potentially viable projects. This supplemental review period and the release of additional funds will allow us to support critical projects now, rather than waiting for a future grant round.”

As a part of its commitment to transparency, DCR has made all grant round 3 applications available on its website. The list of approved projects, along with scoring sheets, will be posted later this week.

The agency plans to release grant round 4 in early 2023, along with the initial round of the newly created Resilient Virginia Revolving Fund. Information is available on the DCR website.

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