Applicants and sub-applicants should adhere to these guiding principles for FY2021:1. Support subapplicants through C&CB to identify mitigation actions and implement projects that reduce risks posed by natural hazards
2. Encourage and enable innovation
3. Promote partnerships and high-impact investments with a focus on critical services and facilities, public safety, public health, and communities
4. Provide opportunity to reduce future losses
5. Promote equity by prioritizing 40% of program benefits to disadvantaged communities
6. Support adoption and enforcement of building codes, standards, and policies that account for the effects of climate change and long-term risk reduction
BRIC evolution and decision-making process
The BRIC program has evolved from FY2020 and reflects the following changes in funding distribution and decision-making processes for FY2021:
- Increased the state/territory set-aside for planning and C&CB activities from $600,000 to $1,000,000
- Increased the tribal set-aside from $20M to $25M
- Increased the national competition total from $446M to $919M
- Increased points for the following quantitative evaluation criteria:
- +10 points for economically disadvantaged rural communities
- +5 points for good building code effectiveness grades
- Increased points for the following qualitative evaluation criteria:
- +10 points for high-impact projects to disadvantaged communities
- +5 points for projects that address climate change and future conditions
FEMA’s decision-making process for awards will be comprised of three basic review tiers: eligibility and completeness, technical evaluation, and qualitative evaluation.
Federal policy in action
Understanding President Biden’s Executive Order 14008, Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad, and the Federal Flood Risk Management Standard (Executive Order 13690, reinstated under Executive Order 14030) will be key to developing compliant and competitive BRIC funding applications.
The Justice40 Initiative
The BRIC program is prioritizing assistance that benefits disadvantaged communities, in accordance with Executive Order 14008 and the Justice 40 Initiative. FEMA will ensure that at least 40% of program benefits go towards disadvantaged communities. In addition, the program is awarding additional points for Economically Disadvantaged Rural Community subapplicants and to projects that benefit disadvantaged communities with populations that exhibit social vulnerability characteristics. Data-driven social vulnerability analyses, coupled with benefit-cost analysis, will be critical for this application cycle.
Federal Flood Risk Management Standard
The Federal Flood Risk Management Standard (FFRMS) is intended to improve the nation’s preparedness and resilience against flooding, including the effects of climate change and other threats. All proposed activities under BRIC must conform with the FFRMS, including the Freeboard Value Approach and the 500-Year Elevation Approach. Correct application of these design criteria and higher standards are important considerations for a flood risk reduction project application.
Putting it all together
FEMA’s FY2021 $1 billion BRIC investment has set off a flurry of activity among eligible applicants and subapplicants—as every community understands the importance of building resilience and promoting equity. Our more than 300 FEMA and HUD experts are on hand to help you navigate the complicated recovery funding and mitigation landscape, while maximizing every dollar to achieve your goals. Learn more about our disaster management and FEMA BRIC capabilities.