FEMA-funded STEP Program
In Monroe County, FEMA instituted a new Sheltering and Temporary Essential Power program known as STEP. This grant program only has been implemented twice before – after Superstorm Sandy in the Northeast and following flooding in and around Baton Rouge, La.
STEP is a rapid repair program which enables eligible individuals or families whose homes were damaged due to Hurricane Irma to take shelter in their own homes while they rebuild. This includes a functional kitchen, bathroom, sleeping area and air-conditioning for this livable area of the home. The program is at no cost to the homeowner.
STEP is not a permanent repair program. STEP is meant to provide the most basic, life -sustaining needs for emergency sheltering. Repairs are capped at $20,000.
STEP was available for disaster-damaged single family, owner-occupied residential properties in Monroe County. These include duplexes, townhomes, modular homes and permanently placed mobile homes.
As of March 20, contractors of the STEP program have completed the repairs of 81 homes throughout Monroe County. These homes also have received their final inspections.
Currently, 51 more homes throughout Monroe County are under construction. All work is expected to be completed by March 30, 2018.
The average Scope of Work Cost Per Home (which includes construction management fees) is $14,571.93. The estimated total project cost is $2.2 million.
A home was not eligible if it could not be made safe for sheltering purposes, including due to the presence of excessive toxic or hazardous materials, for less than the $20,000 cap.
Monroe County is the recipient of the FEMA grant for the STEP program, which is being administered by the State of Florida. The contracted work for the repairs is paid directly by Monroe County.