Kokomo Director of Operations Randy McKay says the city is “not completely surprised” by a decision from FEMA to suspend some grant awards to the state because of unresolved issues with the city's stadium project. He says the city will continue discussions with the state to resolve the matter.
February 26, 2015
Statement From City of Kokomo
We are not completely surprised with the letter from FEMA. We have been working closely with the state since litigation was filed to resolve this matter. We know the state understands the overreach of the federal government; this is not new to the Governor. We hope the state will choose to support the City of Kokomo in our argument that we are in compliance. We intend to continue our discussion with the state to resolve this matter.
Source: City of Kokomo
February 27, 2015
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has suspended all hazard mitigation grant awards to the State of Indiana due to unresolved compliance issues with Kokomo's baseball stadium project.
The Indiana Department of Homeland Security (IDHS) currently has about $5.5 million in mitigation grant funds that will be affected by FEMA's decision. As long as FEMA's decision stands, and Kokomo's stadium compliance issues linger, Indiana will not be eligible for future hazard mitigation funding, which could result in millions of additional lost grant funding to Indiana cities and counties. IDHS is currently managing $50 million in hazard mitigation funded projects. Because these funds are already committed, they are not affected by the suspension.
The suspension may also extend to future disaster funds and the National Flood Insurance Program as related to the Kokomo project. The rest of the state is still eligible for future disaster grants and the National Flood Insurance Program.
FEMA determined in late 2014 that the Kokomo baseball stadium was not in compliance. As the grantee, IDHS has been working with the City of Kokomo to resolve compliance issues.
Up to eight parcels that are currently part of the baseball stadium project must be returned to open space, in accordance with FEMA’s hazard mitigation grant program regulations. The City of Kokomo applied for and was granted FEMA funds from the grant program to purchase the properties.
IDHS previously issued a letter on November 24, 2014, noting the violations and providing a timeline of 60 days for the city to resolve the issues. FEMA's February 25, 2015 letter noted that the violations still exist.
Source: Indiana Department of Homeland Security