Natural hazards such as tornadoes and floods leave permanentmarks on people and communities. It pays to prepare, and that's one reason local governments are currently updating their plans to help protect property and save lives.
The purpose of mitigation planning is to identify policies and actions that can be implemented over the long term to reduce risk and future losses. Mitigation Plans form the foundation for a community's long-term strategy to reduce disaster losses from disaster damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage. The planning process is as important as the plan itself. It creates a framework for risk-based decision making to reduce damages to lives, property, and the economy from future disasters.
State, county and local governments benefit from mitigation planning by:
· Identifying cost effective actions for risk reduction that are agreed upon by stakeholders and the public
· Focusing resources on the greatest risks and vulnerabilities
· Building partnerships by involving people, organizations, and businesses
· Increasing education and awareness of hazards and risk
· Communicating priorities to state and federal officials
· Aligning risk reduction with other community objectives
Every 5 years, FEMA asks communities to adopt a Hazard Mitigation Plan analyzing risks from natural and man-made disasters, and outlining goals and actions to reduce future risks and impacts from disasters. For the past 15 years, the Mid America Regional Council has spearheaded the preparation of a regional hazard mitigation plan encompassing five (5) Missouri counties in our area. Platte City has participated in the development of the last two (2) regional plans, and has elected to do so again for the 2015 update.
A number of hazards were identified in the 2010 Regional Hazard Mitigation Plan, including: tornadoes, flooding, severe thunderstorms, severe winter weather, drought, heat waves, earthquakes, wild land fires, hazardous materials release, emerging infectious disease, civil disorder, and mass transportation accidents. While some of these hazards are less of a threat in some areas compared to other locations, participating communities are encouraged to evaluate the degree of risk these hazards pose, and to the extent appropriate, address them in local emergency operations planning.
State, County, and local governments are required to develop a hazard mitigation plan as a condition for receiving certain types of non-emergency disaster assistance as well as FEMA funds available for mitigation plan development and mitigation projects.
Platte City welcomes all comments and suggestions regarding hazard mitigation planning in Platte City. To view the Hazard Mitigation Plan please go to http://marc.org/Emergency-Services-9-1-1/MEMC/Activities/Natural-Hazard-Mitigation-Plan. If you have any comments, suggestions or concerns please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Carl W. Mitchell
Chief of Police