LAFAYETTE PARISH, La. (KLFY) – The state is now accepting applications from property owners in the Priority 1 zone of the voluntary Scott Buyout Program.

The $7 million program is part of the Louisiana Watershed Initiative (LWI) and is an effort to reduce flood risks by helping residents relocate to safer areas, and by returning flood-prone properties to their natural states.

Scott, along with six other areas across Louisiana is included in this effort, as the LWI is awarding federal funds for the buyouts.

Scott Mayor Jan-Scott Richard discussed the program and stated, “we’re pleased to work with Louisiana Watershed Initiative to offer this voluntary buyout program in an area that has experienced recurring flooding over the years.”

He continued, “this program is designed to help residents move to higher ground and repurpose their properties into natural green space that can store floodwater in the future.”

“We encourage residents in Priority 1 to consider this opportunity if they so choose,” Richard said.

As participation in the program grows, and as funding allows, buyout opportunities may expand into other priority zones.

For more information on this program property owners and residents can contact the buyout program representative by emailing watershed@la.gov or by calling (866) 735-2001.

For more information about the LWI Statewide Buyout Program, visit their website.