Emergency Risk Manager Amy Miller reported to county officials this week that a long-term county project is now in the hands of federal officials, and the Barton County Commission approved a resolution that adopted its version of the Barton County Hazard Mitigation Plan.
It has been a long time in the making, but the county has received tentative approval from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, after the county plan was approved by state officials.
Miller reported earlier that: “On March 23, 2010, the first planning meeting for the Barton County Hazard Mitigation Plan was held. The purpose of a Hazard Mitigation Plan is to guide hazard mitigation to better protect the people and property of Barton County. Having an approved plan makes plan participants eligible to receive both pre and post disaster funding and projects. Without an approved plan there is a potential to lose funding.”
Miller also explained earlier that, with the help of local cities, townships and school districts, as planning partners, the process of developing a Hazard Mitigation Plan included:
• Identifying hazards
• Assessing the impact of the hazards on people and property
• Identifying the location and the extent of hazard areas
• Identifying assets that are at risk
• Identifying actions and projects for hazards
• Making a draft plan available for public review and comment.
After going through the lengthy effort, the plan is now ready to move on.
Once it’s formalized, there is a year for all of the local entities to sign on.
Then, after that, Miller noted, the plan will last for five years and have to be redone, so that it keeps up to date.
Adoption of the plan and its implementation means that local communities will stand a better chance of getting emergency funding in case of a local disaster.