FEMA/Construction Update

We are happy to report that we are making progress toward the approval of our FEMA grant request. We received a letter from FEMA late last week confirming that our request has successfully cleared FEMA’s regional review. That review affirmed that the construction plans we submitted were the most effective method for mitigating the potential for future flood damage on our campus.

The next step, which is already underway, is for our project documentation to return to the regional FEMA Consolidated Resource Center (CRC) for additional review. The CRC has previously reviewed large portions of the project documentation, but it must still conduct a formal review of the new building plans. We do not anticipate any issues with this step. Our consultant, DCMC Partners, has informally shared the building plans with the CRC already. We estimate that the CRC review will take about two months.

Once the project documentation clears the CRC, it will go to Washington, D.C., for statutory review by Congress and the White House Office of Management and Budget. This review should take one month.

After that, the project documentation will return to the local FEMA office for final review and for preparation of our grant’s Letter of Obligation. We estimate that this will take two weeks.

When we have the Letter of Obligation, our lender will finalize our construction financing. We anticipate that this will take three weeks.

If we meet the time estimates for each of the remaining steps, we should be able to begin construction in midsummer. It is possible that we could begin sooner if the project documentation moves through the process more quickly. It is also possible that we may face additional unanticipated delays.

We have had a team of volunteers working many hours behind the scenes to keep the project documentation moving through the process, and we have had much help from the Texas Division of Emergency Management and the local office of FEMA. Rick Patterson of DCMC Partners continues to guide us through this process, and he and his company have provided invaluable assistance. We thank all of them for their work.

We will continue to update you as we work to complete this process.