Governor McAuliffe Announces Virginia Moving Forward in Natural Disaster Resilience Competition
~Focus remains on Hampton Roads region to address climate and sea level change~
RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that Virginia has been selected to advance to the next round of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) National Disaster Resilience Competition (NDRC). Virginia has put forth an initiative to help the Hampton Roads region plan for the effects of sea level rise and recurrent flooding and develop plans for recovery from future natural disasters.
“Virginia’s continued success in this important competition is great news for our ongoing efforts to combat the effects of global warming and recurrent flooding," said Governor McAuliffe. “The Commonwealth is committed to developing a strong plan with our partners that will continue to build upon the efforts put forth in the resiliency planning process, and we hope to receive additional resources to strengthen these vulnerable communities and improve economic vitality for the region.”
Virginia will be competing with 40 other projects nationwide for funding from HUD’s $1 billion competition. The NDRC makes $1 billion available to communities that have been affected by natural disasters in recent years. Grants will range from $1 million to $500 million, and the competition will fund the implementation of innovative resilience projects to better prepare communities for future storms and other extreme events, including climate change. Participation in Virginia’s effort is broadly based, bringing together multiple state and federal agencies, local governments, institutions of higher education, community groups and private sector partners. This grant opportunity is focused on communities in the Hampton Roads area, but these projects will benefit the Commonwealth as a whole, particularly in regions that experience flooding or other natural hazards.
The result of the initial proposal was the creation of an innovative living with water approach called “thRIVe: Resilience in Virginia.” The goal of this plan is to unite the region, create coastal resilience, build water management solutions, improve economic vitality and strengthen vulnerable neighborhoods. This comprehensive approach is designed to capitalize on the region’s strengths, convert risks and vulnerabilities into economic opportunities and demonstrate best practices for low-lying areas nationwide.
“Virginia has strong cooperation from various partners in the Hampton Roads region and throughout the state. We are confident in the Commonwealth’s proposed plan, ‘thRIVe’, and the resilience goals we have set forth,” said Virginia’s Chief Resilience Officer and Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran.
“We are excited about the transition into the next phase of this competition, and we will continue to work together to identify and address the needs of Virginia’s coastal communities,” said Secretary of Natural Resources Molly Ward.
The deadline for the phase two applications is October 27, 2015. For more information on Virginia’s resiliency plan, visit www.dhcd.virginia.gov.