How the Federal Emergency Management Agency Supports Military and Community Compatible Use

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) falls under the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and is well known for leading responses to natural and man-made disasters. FEMA also provides tools, resources, guidance, and funding to help communities plan for disasters and catastrophic events, addressing topics such as resilience, preparation, hazard mitigation, and training. Communities and military installation planners can apply for help, including free training programs, to implement resiliency and compatibility review recommendations, funded by OLDCC. There are also grants that reduce local funding requirements and provide matching or contributing f​unds, which allows larger projects to be undertaken that otherwise would not have been possible; further improving compatibility.

FEMA grants support critical recovery initiatives, innovative research, and many other projects. The principal funding sources FEMA uses to commit and award federal aid to eligible states, local governments, tribal entities, nonprofits, individuals, and institutions of higher learning are grants, including:

  • Hazard mitigation for planning and projects that reduce flood damage, forest and grassland management, and facility retrofits to mitigate the impacts of destructive natural events
  • Support for communities and first responders to prepare for and respond to natural and manmade events that affect cybersecurity, public transportation, firefighting and law enforcement
  • Dam safety and earthquake related mitigation, such as safety inspections, updated building codes, and seismic mitigation plans

Compatibility Factors relevant to the Federal Emergency Management Agency: Anti-terrorism/Force Protection, Communication/Coordination, Public Services, Roadway Capacity, Safety Zones

Relevant Programs and Plans

Preparedness Grants


Preparedness Grants help communities build, sustain, and improve their ability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate the effects of manmade or natural disasters and emergencies. The bulk of such grants go to first responders at the local, state, and regional level.

Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities Program


The Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities Program (BRIC) aims to shift the federal focus away from reactive disaster spending, toward research-supported, proactive investments in community resilience. BRIC supports states, communities, tribes, and territories as they undertake hazard mitigation projects to reduce the risks associated with disasters and natural hazards. The program's overarching principles include supporting communities through capability and capacity building; encouraging and enabling innovation; promoting partnerships; enabling large projects; maintaining flexibility; and providing consistency. BRIC examples include innovative partnerships, such as shared funding mechanisms, or in-kind resources from a range of private and public sector partners. In addition to the benefits of reducing risks due to hurricane, storm, or earthquake damage, an innovative project may offer multiple community benefits. Potential applicants are encouraged to explore the Resource List for the BRIC Grant Program, which includes application tips, technical assistance, and information about eligible activities.

Hazard Mitigation Assistance Grants and Hazard Mitigation Grant Program


Hazard Mitigation Assistance Grants and Hazard Mitigation Grant Program: These programs fund eligible mitigation measures to reduce loss of life and property due to natural disasters, such as hurricanes, floods, and tornadoes. Mitigation planning can help break the cycle of disaster damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage by addressing long-term solutions to reduce future impacts.

Community Emergency Response Team


The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) provides training and education on local and regional disaster preparedness. Training topics include disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and medical operations. While training is primarily aimed at volunteer organizations that work side-by-side with public emergency response teams, it can also help jurisdictions and military installations provide outreach and awareness to installation and community residents. CERT materials offer a standardized framework so communications are consistent across communities, thereby improving coordination when a catastrophe affects a region or multiple jurisdictions.

Organizations Preparing for Emergency Needs


The Organizations Preparing for Emergency Needs (OPEN) program provides web-based, self-guided training, and a downloadable instructor kit that can be used by community and military planners to better prepare for emergencies and disasters by identifying risks, locating resources, and recommending preparedness actions. While these programs target smaller, non-profit organizations and community support networks, local governments, state agencies, and military installations can also benefit from the provided information and resources.



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