In accordance with the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, since amended by the Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000, local governments are required to develop a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) approved hazard mitigation plan as a condition to be eligible to receive funding for mitigation projects. Local hazard mitigation planning involves the inventorying of community resources, identifying and assessing hazards that have potential to negatively impact the region and determining how to best minimize or manage risks associated with identified hazards.
Hazard mitigation plans are reviewed and updated on a five year cycle. As part of the process, regional and local mitigation goals and strategies are reexamined and new ones created. This is in an effort to better define potential mitigation projects on the regional and local levels. The planning process itself involves input from the public, safety officials, representatives from local governments and other community stakeholders. By being proactive and putting mitigation measures into place, risk to life and property can be reduced and thus creating a safer and more disaster-resilient community.
PUBLIC SURVEY (Open from August 30th - September 30th)
The Southside Planning District Commission, in cooperation with the counties of Brunswick, Halifax, Mecklenburg, and their twelve towns, are currently working to update the Southside Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan. Hazard mitigation is any sustained action taken to reduce or eliminate the loss of life and property damage from various weather related events. The results from this survey will help provide a better understanding of the public's perceptions and opinions regarding natural hazards throughout our region. The survey consists of ten questions and should only take a few minutes to complete. Your participation would be greatly appreciated.
The Southside Planning District Commission (SPDC) was recently awarded funds from FEMA and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) to conduct a comprehensive review and update of the 2013 Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan. This process will include updating data related to the historical occurrences of hazards and their location, impact, and financial losses. Additionally, mitigation goals and strategies will be reviewed, updated and prioritized in an effort to identify and push for projects that will ultimately reduce risk to future damages.
Kickoff Meeting - August 2, 2018
A Hazard Mitigation Plan update kickoff meeting was held that included representatives from the SPDC, VDEM, DCR, numerous local jurisdictions, and other community stakeholders. This meeting provided an overview of the update process as well as a look at several grant opportunities for future mitigation projects.
Planning Team Meeting - February 14, 2019
The planning team met to review work that had been completed on two sections of the Hazard Mitigation Plan, the Regional Profile and Hazard Identification. The Regional Profile provides a broad overview of the region, including the counties of Brunswick, Halifax, and Mecklenburg. A draft version of this document can be found below. Please note that final formatting will occur later.
Hazard Identification focuses on the hazard events that are most likely to impact our region. Each hazard identified includes a description, what locations are impacted by it, how strong the weather event can be, previous occurrences, and how the region may be impacted by it in the future. The hazard identified include: tropical cyclones (hurricanes, tropical storms, tropical depressions), flooding, tornadoes, severe winter weather (snow/ice), extreme temperatures (heat/cold waves), severe storms (hail, high winds), earthquakes, landslides, wildfires, drought, lightning, and dam failure. A draft version of each of the aforementioned hazards can be found below. Please note that final formatting will occur later.
There was also discussion on collecting data related to critical facilities/infrastructure, conducting an overall risk assessment (ranking each hazard based on future risk to the region and for each jurisdiction), outreach strategies, and capability assessments for each local jurisdiction to particpate in.
Planning Team Meeting - August 5, 2019
The planning team met to learn and discuss the hazard rankings as well as the methodology utilized. Each hazard was reviewed and ranked for each jurisdiction. Other topics of discussion included: overview of the data collected for critical facilities/infrastructure, an update on the ongoing capability assessment for each jurisdiction, the reviewing and updating of regional goals and mitigation actions, and the review of a draft community survey. Future tasks will include reviewing and updating each jurisdictions mitigation actions, the running of FEMA's disaster simulation software known as HAZUS, making the survey available to the public through various platforms, and holding a public meeting.
Please take time to complete the Hazard Mitigation Survey found above by September 30th. A public meeting is currently being planned for late September, although final details are still be worked out. Public comments on 2013 version of the Hazard Mitigation Plan or any of the updated draft documents can be provided at any time. Should you have any feedback that you wish to share or just have a general question, please contact Chad Neese at (434) 447-7101, ext. 211 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.