A Kentucky National Guard flight crew overlooks flooding in eastern Kentucky in 2022.

$298 million plan will help Kentucky rebuild after floods

February 28, 2024

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently approved a $279.9 million plan that will help 20 eastern Kentucky counties rebuild after heavy flooding in July 2022.

The Kentucky Department for Local Government’s (DLG) action plan outlines how to distribute federal money to projects that will help prevent future damage to homes, businesses, schools and public infrastructure. The state will implement programs funded by the 2022 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG-DR) action plan in summer 2024.

The plan’s major spending allocations include $134.4 million for public infrastructure, stormwater management, watershed restoration, broadband, roads, bridges and debris removal. The plan includes $70 million for building single-family housing, $30 million for building multifamily rental properties and $24.9 million for rehabilitating and reconstructing owner-occupied buildings.

The DLG will post program guidelines and open an application process to help distribute the funding. Eligibility will extend to cities, counties or tribal authorities who apply in conjunction with an eligible developer who is committed to and will complete the project in a timely manner. The program will end when DLG has expended all funds and participants have completed closeout.

The DLG will make funding decisions based on application completeness, compliance with threshold items, review of minimum score, justification for funding and project feasibility. Kentucky currently has a combined $333.3 million in unmet housing and infrastructure needs, according to the plan.

The plan stipulates that 80% of the funding must benefit areas HUD has identified as Most Impacted and Distressed (MID). The state must also allocate at least 70% toward activities that benefit Low to Moderate Income (LMI) persons.

This major step toward rebuilding Kentucky’s flood-ravaged counties follows a 2023 HUD announcement of $3.3 billion in CDBG-DR funds for six states and Puerto Rico — including $2.7 billion for Florida. The federal aid provides disaster relief for LMI populations and will help restore infrastructure and housing, revitalize the economy and support other needs. Alaska, Illinois, Missouri and Oklahoma will also receive CDBG-DR assistance.

U.S. Army National Guard Photo by Sgt. Jesse Elbouab

Paul Stinson

Paul Stinson has more than 15 years of journalism experience, including a decade covering the legislative and regulatory affairs of Texas, South Africa, and Germany for an affiliate of Bloomberg, L.P. His experience includes covering voting rights and the sectors of environment, energy, labor, healthcare, and taxes. Stinson joined the team in October as a reporter for SPI’s news publications, which include Government Contracting Pipeline, Texas Government Insider, and the newly-launched Government Market News. He is also a Fulbright Scholar to Germany, and an Arthur F. Burns Fellow. He holds a master’s in journalism from Indiana University.   

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