Welcome to the WAPDD Hazard Mitigation Website. The HMP is required by state and federal agencies in order for communities to be eligible for certain types of mitigation funding to reduce hazard risk. This website provides project updates, resources, and links to hazard mitigation in support of the plan update.
The goal of the project is to save lives and property through the reduction of hazard vulnerability for the entire county. During the course of this planning project, county and local leaders will work in tandem to identify risks, assess capabilities, and formulate a strategy to reduce disaster vulnerability.
Public and stakeholder participation and feedback is a vital part of the hazard mitigation planning process. Please check the engagement page regularly for information on upcoming opportunities to engage in the planning process. If you would like to get in touch with the project team, please use the following contact information:
Tracee McKenna, Director of Community Development – firstname.lastname@example.org
WHAT IS HAZARD MITIGATION?
Natural hazards have the potential to cause property loss, loss of life, economic hardship, and threats to public health and safety. While an important aspect of emergency management deals with disaster recovery (i.e., those actions that a community must take to repair damages and make itself whole in the wake of a natural disaster), an equally important aspect of emergency management involves hazard mitigation.
Hazard mitigation actions are efforts taken before a disaster happens to lessen the impact that future disasters of that type will have on people and property in the community. They are things you do today to be more protected in the future. Hazard mitigation actions taken in advance of a hazard event are essential to breaking the typical disaster cycle of damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage. With careful selection, hazard mitigation actions can be long-term, cost-effective means of reducing the risk of loss and help create a more disaster-resistant and sustainable community.
WHAT IS A HAZARD MITIGATION PLAN?
A hazard mitigation plan is a well-organized and well-documented evaluation of the hazards that a jurisdiction is susceptible to, and the extent to which these events will occur. Hazard mitigation plans identify an area’s vulnerability to the effects of the hazards, as well as the goals, objectives, and actions required for minimizing future loss of life, injury, property damage, and economic disruption as a result of hazard events.
PURPOSE AND NEED FOR THE PLAN
A hazard mitigation plan is developed BEFORE a disaster strikes. The plan identifies 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, the plan will gradually, but steadily, lessen the impacts associated with hazard events in your community.
Under the Federal Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 (DMA 2000), as of November 1, 2004 communities that do not have a FEMA-approved hazard mitigation plan in place are no longer eligible for FEMA project grant monies under long standing programs such as the Flood Mitigation Assistance Program (FMA), Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) and the Building Resilience Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC).
OUTCOMES: IDENTIFYING MITIGATION PROJECTS AND OTHER BENEFITS
A major focus of this plan will be to identify effective mitigation projects and realistic implementation strategies, including identifying potential funding streams. This includes projects that may be eligible for federal funding through FEMA grants or other federal sources, as well as to projects that may not qualify for federal funding but are still important to a community. This planning process will help lay the groundwork for implementation of both federally fundable and non-federally fundable mitigation projects.
In addition to identifying effective mitigation projects, a plan will also assist your community in the following ways:
- Increased understanding of hazards and risk your community faces;
- Eligibility for federal funds for pre-disaster mitigation planning under DMA 2000;
- Developing partnerships that support planning and mitigation efforts and may offer potential financial savings, including: reduced flood insurance premiums, broader resources for funding of mitigation projects, and enhanced benefit-cost ratios;
- Enhanced coordination of hazard mitigation with comprehensive planning and zoning;
- Development of more sustainable and disaster-resistant communities; and
- Reduced long-term impacts and damages to human health and structures, and reduced repair costs.
- Proactive mitigation leads to the development of sustainable, cost-effective projects. In contrast, reactive mitigation tends to yield “quick-fix” alternatives that may cost much and accomplish little. Proactive mitigation is also far more cost-effective than paying to clean up and rebuild after disasters happen. Danger to population and damage to property can be reduced if the region evaluates where and how disasters may occur and take steps to reduce those risks.