High-Risk Dam Rehabilitation: Federal Emergency Management Agency Announces Grant for Arkansas Department of Agriculture’s Division of Natural Resources | Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard, LLC

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The Arkansas Department of Agriculture announced in a Nov. 7 news release that its Natural Resources Division (“NRD”) had been approved for a high-risk dam rehabilitation grant by the Federal Agency for Emergency Management (“FEMA”).

The amount of the grant is $226,803.

The Water Infrastructure Improvement for the Nation Act (i.e., WIIN Act), enacted in 2016, added a new grant program under FEMA’s National Dam Safety Program. Section 5006 of the Act provides technical, planning, design, and construction assistance in the form of grants for the rehabilitation of eligible high-risk dams.

High hazard potential is a classification standard for any dam whose failure or missed operation will result in loss of life and destruction of significant property. FEMA has allocated $22 million in grants in fiscal year 2022 to continue the program. This included $11 million from the bipartisan infrastructure law. $11.64 million is available for planning and design activities and $10.6 million is targeted for construction-ready activities only.

BDNI director Chris Colclasure is quoted in the press release as saying:

This funding will enable cities and communities to better implement dam rehabilitation plans and strategies while focusing on Arkansas’ safety.

A copy of the press release can be downloaded here.