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Udall, Bennet Welcome $62.8 Million from HUD for Flood Recovery Efforts

Senators Led Delegation Request for Community Development Block Grant Funds to Help Coloradans Rebuild Following Historic Flooding

Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013

Following a tour of flood damage and the ongoing recovery efforts in Lyons today, U.S. Senators Mark Udall and Michael Bennet welcomed Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Shaun Donovan announcement that Colorado will receive $62.8 million from the Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) program. The announcement follows a letter Udall and Bennet sent to Secretary Donovan in September urging HUD to make such funds available for flood recovery efforts.

The flexibility that comes with CDBG-DR funds make them extraordinarily useful for recovery efforts.

This infusion of federal support from HUD will supplement assistance already provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Small Business Administration (SBA).

"As communities across Colorado continue to recover from September's flood, these disaster recovery funds will ensure that victims do not fall through the cracks. I will keep fighting to ensure that these Community Development Block Grant funds are used wisely to supplement the assistance FEMA, the Small Business Administration and other agencies have provided to Coloradans," Udall said. "These HUD funds are especially important for uninsured homeowners, many of whom did not live in a high-risk flood area but saw their homes destroyed nonetheless."

"Coloradans have made significant progress rebuilding and repairing in the aftermath of the floods this fall, but there’s still a lot of work to be done," Bennet said. "CDBG resources will help a wide range of recovery efforts, from individual home owners and businesses repairing damaged property, to cities and towns reconstructing roads, bridges and public spaces. This funding is critical for a number of small Colorado towns overwhelmed by this disaster to help finance rebuilding costs. This is another big step forward as Colorado builds back better than before."

The CDBG Disaster Recovery Program provides flexible grants to help rebuild communities affected by disasters, particularly in areas that may struggle to recover due to limited resources. CDBG funds can be used to aid recovery efforts involving housing, economic development, infrastructure and prevention of further damage to affected areas. Among other uses, the funding could potentially help supplement repair and replacement costs for the thousands of Colorado homeowners impacted by the floods.

Bennet and Udall have worked closely with Governor John Hickenlooper, state agencies and the entire Congressional delegation since the flooding began to ensure that Coloradans have every resource needed to rebuild. In October, the senators helped lead a delegation-wide effort that successfully lifted the cap on the amount of emergency transportation resources Colorado could access to rebuild damaged infrastructure. They also led the Colorado delegation in urging the President to quickly declare an emergency when flooding began to ensure that emergency funding was available for response and recovery efforts.

By: James Dakin Owens
 
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