11 Things You Need to Know About the Disaster Recovery Reform Act

In late November, H.R. 4460, affectionately called the Disaster Recovery… (…)
In late November, H.R. 4460, affectionately called the Disaster Recovery Reform Act (DRRA) was introduced by Rep. Lou Barletta of Pennsylvania. Cosponsored by representatives from Georgia, Louisiana, and Puerto Rico, this bill is aimed to “improve the provision of disaster and mitigation assistance.”
 

We eagerly look forward to the passing of this bill and the impact it will have on our community. Here’s what we think you should know about it now.

 

  1. The focus of this bipartisan bill is improving pre-disaster planning/mitigation with the intention of reducing rising costs of disasters and future loss of life.
  2. DRRA incentivizes building and rebuilding better/smarter, which increases disaster resilience and invests in mitigation.
  3. For every $1 spent on mitigation, between $4-$8 dollars are saved by avoiding recovery costs.
  4. The focus of DRAA in regards to mitigation includes: saving lives, minimizing damage to property, reducing disaster costs, and saving taxpayers’ money.
  5. DRRA reforms FEMA/Stafford Act, allowing for a percentage of post-disaster assistance to be invested in pre-disaster hazard mitigation, including faster inspection of structures.
  6. In addition to mitigation, this bill addresses the prevention of wildfires, increases agency efficiency and accountability, and provides for eligibility for disaster assistance.
  7. Additionally, DRRA provides for the prioritization of facilities, guidance for the planning of evacuation routes, and addresses what qualifies as “proof of insurance.”
  8. Authorizes states to use federal disaster assistance for temporary/permanent housing assistance. It also allows for more flexibility/options housing disaster victims.
  9. DRAA provides for additional protections for individuals with disabilities, which includes the prioritization of facilities and increased assistance to individuals with disabilities.
  10. Includes language that focuses on inter-agency response review and implementation of recommendations moving forward. It also includes language on agency accountability in regards to spending, contracts, and related activities.
  11. DRRA seeks a way to make the collection and sharing of information easier to for disaster assistance agencies.
 
We’re excited about this! Every step towards more planning means one step away from the knee-jerk response when caught unprepared. For more information on DRRA, check out this presentation.
 
What would you like to see added to this bill?
Topics: Public Policy

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