The Relationship Between Flood Mitigation Assistance Grants and Economic Resilience at the County Level
Thomas, Adam T
The Federal Emergency Management Agency provides Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) grants to state and local governments to reduce flood-related damages and loss of life. Existing research supports claims of the effectiveness of these projects, but there is little research on the impact of mitigation efforts on the long-term economic resilience of affected areas. Using county unemployment rates as a proxy for the economic health of a county, I examine the relationship between FMA grants and the change in county unemployment rates after a flood. I find no correlation between mitigation projects and the unemployment rate in the year immediately after a flood, but I do find a negative correlation between the number of projects approved and the unemployment rate five years after a flood.
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