Homeland Security and Emergency Services

Environmental Planning and Historic Preservation (EHP)

The Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) policy is to act with care to ensure that its disaster response and recovery, mitigation and preparedness responsibilities are carried out in a manner that is consistent with all Federal EHP policies and laws to protect, restore and enhance the quality of the environment and to avoid or minimize adverse impacts to the environment.  The EHP program integrates the protection and enhancement of environmental, historic, and cultural resources into their mission, programs and activities.

EHP reviews for particular projects funded through Homeland Security grants must be submitted to NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) for FEMA's review and approval prior to expending these funds or starting the project.

For Office of Counter Terrorism Grants


Resources/Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

For Office of Emergency Management Grants

Most New York State Office of Emergency Management (NYS OEM) grant programs are funded with Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) monies. It is the policy of FEMA and NYS OEM to act with care to ensure that their response and recovery, mitigation and preparedness responsibilities are carried out in a manner consistent with all Federal policies and laws, including those protecting the environment and historic and cultural resources. Two primary NYS OEM programs involving bricks-and-mortar work that have the potential to affect the environment are:

  • Public Assistance (PA) post-disaster recovery grants enabled by Presidential declaration to reimburse for the emergency protective measures and the repair of eligible public facilities and infrastructure by eligible government and private non-profit sub-applicants;
  • Hazard Mitigation pre-disaster project grants to eligible government sub-applicants to avoid or reduce the loss of life and property in future events.

NYS OEM will always be your primary point of contact for all aspects of these programs because it is the conduit for federal assistance.

Sub-applicants are responsible for obtaining and complying with all applicable local, state and federal permits. (While FEMA conducts environmental and historic preservation reviews of proposed actions, the agency does not obtain permits.) Thus, sub-applicants should continue to coordinate with agencies like the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers or the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) for work in waterways just as they would if no disaster had been declared. Failure to obtain applicable permits may jeopardize the federal funding.

FEMA is the lead federal agency for consultations with resource agencies such as the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, the National Marine Fisheries Service and others (see below). FEMA conducts the necessary federal consultations and compliance reviews prior to grant approval, and these can sometimes result in mandatory project conditions being placed on the project to limit adverse effects to the environment during construction. Examples of conditions are the use of best management practices to minimize sedimentation in waterways, limitations on when construction can begin due to nesting shorebirds, or guidelines for repairing historic structures.

FEMA also is the lead federal agency for consultations with the New York State Historic Preservation Office (NYSHPO) in accordance with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966. However, State agencies and sub-applicants may also consult directly with the SHPO to seek the comments of project effect required under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act if they wish and provide the findings to FEMA. If you decide to take advantage of this option, please coordinate with your NYS OEM contact and we can assist.

Resource Agency Web Pages

Special Considerations Questions

FEMA has developed the nine Special Considerations Questions to identify insurance issues (Question 1, for Public Assistance recovery projects only) and nearby environmental and historic resources and evaluate your project's potential to affect them. These are used nationwide, and your NYS OEM-FEMA Team will review them with you as they inspect your damages (Public Assistance) or discuss mitigation projects (Public Assistance and Hazard Mitigation).

  1. Does the damaged facility or item of work have insurance and/or is it an insurable risk (e.g., buildings, equipment, vehicles, etc.)?
  2. Is the damaged facility located within a floodplain or coastal high hazard area/or does it have an impact on a floodplain or wetland?
  3. Is the damaged facility or item of work located within or adjacent to a Coastal Barrier Resource System (CBRS) Unit or an Otherwise Protected Area?
  4. Will the proposed facility repairs/reconstruction change the pre-disaster condition (e.g., footprint, material, location, capacity, use or function)?
  5. Does the applicant have a hazard mitigation proposal or would the applicant like technical assistance for a hazard mitigation proposal?
  6. Is the damaged facility on the National Register of Historic Places or the state historic listing? Is it older than 50 years? Are there other, similar buildings near the site?
  7. Are there any pristine or undisturbed areas on, or near, the project site? Are there large tracts of forest land?
  8. Are there any hazardous materials at or adjacent to the damaged facility and/or item of work?
  9. Are there any other environmental or controversial issues associated with the damaged facility and/or item of work?

Program Contacts

Public Assistance (post-disaster):

Hazard Mitigation (pre-disaster plans, projects):

NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services
State Office of Emergency Management
1220 Washington Avenue
Albany, New York 12226-2251