Governor Mike Pence today announced that Morgan County will receive Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grant funds of $285,253 to purchase homes that are prone to flooding.
Morgan County and the Indiana Department of Homeland Security (IDHS) worked together with FEMA to secure the grant. FEMA, part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, released the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) funds to Morgan County for the demolition and acquisition of up to five homes located in the flood plain.
"Repetitive flooding is a costly issue throughout the state," said Governor Pence. "Removing these properties from harm's way relieves these families of financial stress, and also is an advantage for Morgan County and the State of Indiana."
HMGP provides grants to state and local governments to implement long-term hazard mitigation measures. Through HMGP, FEMA will pay 75 percent of the $380,337 eligible project cost. The remaining 25 percent of the funds, $95,084, will be provided by Morgan County. IDHS will administer the grant program.
Morgan County: 115 properties purchased since 2005
Since 2005, 115 properties have been purchased and demolished in Morgan County. Funds from FEMA grants and the Morgan County riverboat tax fund to purchase the properties and help families in those homes relocate. Of those families, less than 1 percent have relocated outside of Morgan County.
"These types of grants are not possible without the action of a local jurisdiction," said Governor Pence. "I applaud Morgan County for its long-term commitment and to continually move this process forward."
Land may be turned into green space or areas for parks and recreation. Approximately 25 acres have been dedicated to agricultural space, while less than 10 acres have been left to return to nature and wildlife.
Floods are among the most frequent and costly natural disasters. Here are a few tips:
Do not walk through flowing water. Six inches of moving water can knock you off your feet. If you must walk through flowing water due to an emergency, use a pole or stick to make sure that the ground is still there before you go through an area where the water is not flowing.
Do not drive through a flooded area. Obey road barriers; the road or bridge may be washed out.
If you are home, be ready to evacuate. Put together a portable kit with water, food and other necessities. Watch changing conditions so you can evacuate before roadways become impassable.
Keep up-to-date on the weather by watching TV, listening to the radio, or monitoring online reports.
Obey public safety professionals. If they warn you to evacuate or stay out of certain areas, heed their warning.