HB 1684 / SB 2082
Resilient Tennessee Revolving Loan Fund
What is HB 1684 / SB 2082?
HB 1684 / SB 2082 is supported by Governor Lee and sponsored by House Majority Leader William Lamberth and Senate Majority Leader Jack Johnson to allow the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency to operate the Resilient Tennessee Revolving Loan Fund. The Tennessee legislature seeded the fund with $5 million in 2023, which will then be matched with up to $50 million by the federal government as provided by the STORM Act.
With the passage of HB 1684 / SB 2082, TEMA will now be able to leverage funds from FEMA and use them for low interest loans to help communities with their local matches of federal grants. The loans will open the door for hazard mitigation projects that were previously out of reach. These projects will increase community resilience and save taxpayers money by reducing the losses from future disasters.
The STORM Act
The STORM Act is a federal law that establishes the Safeguarding Tomorrow Revolving Loan Fund program to seed state-run revolving loan funds which will assist communities in funding their local share of federal grants. This program will function similar to the Clean Water and Drinking Water revolving funds administered by TDEC.
The Resilient Tennessee Revolving Loan Fund empowers local communities to access federal grants programs that otherwise would be out of reach. Local governments can leverage long-term, low-interest loans from the fund to finance hazard mitigation projects that build resilience at the local level. This allows smaller communities the flexibility needed to fund existing services and programs while looking ahead toward disaster preparedness.
Smaller county governments have proven to be less likely to apply for and/or receive federal funding, as they often lack the expertise and/or personnel dedicated to grant writing and management that most competitive federal grants often require. Establishing a state-level revolving loan fund—seeded with up to $50 million in state and federal funds—puts TEMA in the driver’s seat, which makes it significantly easier for smaller communities to apply and receive the funds they need for critical projects.
HB 1684 / SB 2082
How do we pass HB 1684 / SB 2082?
The Tennessee General Assembly seeded the Resilient Tennessee Revolving Loan Fund with $5 million in 2023. The legislature must now pass HB 1684/SB 2082 to provide TEMA with the authorization and staff to operate the fund. Without authorization, Tennessee will miss out on millions in federal funding.