This Action Guide is designed to help local governments across the U.S. leverage hazard mitigation buyouts to protect, restore, and connect habitats in local communities. Greatly informed by the information gathered through in-depth case studies and conversations with key players in local buyout programs, the Guide highlights management approaches that will be useful and practicable for the local officials and managers who have the ability to target their acquisitions in ways that improve habitat connectivity and resilience while also reducing flood hazards.
This Action Guide does not necessarily provide an exhaustive checklist of steps that should be taken to successfully complete a habitat restoration project on acquired flood-prone properties. Rather, it is a guide for thinking through various available management options that maximize the benefits of floodplain acquisition programs and for considering challenges before they arise in order to promote successful completion of projects. Readers will gain a clearer understanding of the floodplain acquisition process, the benefits of managing floodplain acquisitions to improve habitats, and how to plan and address the challenges that come with undertaking such projects. Additional resources are introduced throughout the guide, and should be used to complement the information presented in the following sections as projects are planned and executed.