The Resilient AMERICA Act contains a host of provisions designed to create a significant number of new resources for communities to better protect themselves ahead of natural catastrophes.
This week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed bipartisan legislation, H.R. 5689, the "Resilient Assistance for Mitigation for Environmentally Resilient Infrastructure and Construction by Americans (AMERICA) Act."
As part of the BuildStrong Coalition, the Big “I" previously sent a letter of support for this legislation to leaders on Capitol Hill. The BuildStrong Coalition is an organization of firefighters, emergency responders, insurers, agents, engineers, architects, contractors and manufacturers, as well as consumer organizations, code specialists, and many others committed to building a more resilient America by increasing investments in mitigation to draw down disaster costs and losses.
This Resilient AMERICA Act contains a host of provisions designed to create a significant number of new resources for communities to better protect themselves ahead of natural catastrophes. This includes policies that would increase funding for the National Public Infrastructure Pre-Disaster Mitigation fund (commonly known as Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities, or BRIC, Program). BRIC was created by the Disaster Recovery Reform Act to provide grants to local governments for risk-reducing mitigation projects that make homes and infrastructure more resilient in advance of severe climate events, as well as those that would harden communities by creating new resources and incentives for states and localities to adopt and enforce modern constructions standards and building codes. Importantly, the bill will also establish a new pilot program under FEMA to provide resources to communities and homeowners for the purpose of retrofitting existing homes and buildings.
The Resilient AMERICA Act now heads to the U.S. Senate, where it will need to be considered and passed before it can be enacted into law. The Big “I" will continue to work with the BuildStrong Coalition in an effort to educate senators on the vital importance of the bill for improving the safety and resiliency of communities across the country.
Wyatt Stewart is Big “I" assistant vice president of federal government affairs.