WHAT IS HAZARD MITIGATION?
Natural hazards have the potential to cause property damage, loss of life, economic hardship, and threats to public health and safety.
Hazard mitigation measures are the things you do today to be more protected in the future. They are measures taken before a disaster happens to reduce the impact that future disasters will have on people and property in the community. Mitigation reduces the risk of loss and creates a more disaster-resistant and sustainable community. Hazard mitigation measures are essential to breaking the typical disaster cycle of damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage.
PURPOSE AND NEED FOR THE PLAN
Hazard mitigation plans are developed BEFORE a disaster strikes. The plans identify community policies, actions, and tools for long-term implementation to reduce risk and potential for future losses. Adopted, implemented and maintained on an ongoing basis, these plans will gradually, but steadily, lessen the impacts associated with hazard events.
As of November 1, 2004 communities without a FEMA-approved hazard mitigation plan are not eligible for FEMA project grant monies under programs such as the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP), Flood Mitigation Assistance Program (FMA) and Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant Program (PDM).
Jurisdictions who wish to be recognized by FEMA as being compliant with DMA 2000 must either: (a) participate in the multi-jurisdictional plan development process and formally adopt the final plan, or (b) prepare their own hazard mitigation plan. All jurisdictions in Lewis County are being invited to participate in the multi-jurisdictional planning process.
To be recognized in FEMA's eyes as successfully participating in the multi-jurisdictional plan, jurisdictions must: participate actively in the planning process; develop unique jurisdictional mitigation actions; and formally adopt the final plan. Active participation involves attending meetings, providing feedback, and reaching out to the public and other key stakeholders in the community.
While the primary advantage of having a mitigation plan in place is the jurisdiction's eligibility to apply for FEMA hazard mitigation project grant monies, participation has other advantages as well:
Elected and appointed government officials, business leaders, volunteers of non-profit organizations, citizens, and other stakeholders who choose to participate will become part of our overall Lewis County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Planning Committee. To keep meeting sizes to workable numbers, the Planning Committee will be broken up into a Core Planning Group (CPG) and Jurisdictional Assessment Teams (JATs).
The CPG will include representatives of Lewis County and any of the county's jurisdictions who choose to participate in the process. The CPG will oversee the overall plan formulation activities and contribute to the decision making process. The CPG will coordinate the plan efforts by organizing outreach by means of a team concept through the JATs.
The JATs will include representatives from the individual participating jurisdictions. It will be responsible for local community involvement in the multi-jurisdictional mitigation plan.
Regardless of team, all participating jurisdictions must:
The mitigation plan development process will occur over approximately one year, beginning in Spring 2009. A Draft Plan is targeted for completion in December of 2009.
A Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Planning Page is currently under development on the County's web site. We encourage you to check back for additional information and updates at: http://lewiscountyny.org/emergency
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Thank you for your interest! For questions or other feedback, please contact:
James Martin, Director
Fire & Emergency Management
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