Boston, MA -- The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has recognized the Lamoille County Planning Commission (LCPC) for efforts in making their community disaster resistant through the Project Impact initiative. The planning commission was presented with the Livability Award for Land Use during this year's third annual Project Impact Summit in Washington, DC.
"It is a great honor for the Lamoille County Planning Commission to receive this award. We believe that the key to promoting disaster prevention and hazard mitigation comes through the development of a strong broad-based partnership with organizations, residents and businesses," said LCPC Executive Director Michelle Boomhower.
FEMA Director James Lee Witt presented the award at the Project Impact Awards Gala Thursday night, Nov. 16, 2000. Livability Award for Land Use is given to the community who has actively applied land use planning to new growth since becoming a Project Impact community.
"The Lamoille County Planning Commission and all the recipients of this year's Project Impact awards are leaders in the Project Impact effort. They are helping to build the infrastructure for disaster prevention in every community in America," said Director Witt. "Their outstanding effort demonstrate that we don't have to be victims of natural disasters. Every one of us can take steps to prevent ourselves, our loved ones, our businesses and our communities from becoming disaster victims."
The Lamoille County Planning Commission is working to prevent disaster and promote Project Impact by applying the principles of hazard mitigation to regional and local land use planning programs. In addition, it is promoting disaster prevention programs targeted at new growth and addressing site design through enhanced disaster resistant landscape and natural systems management principles.
"As Project Impact gains momentum nationwide, the driving force behind our efforts are businesses, communities and most importantly the fighting spirit of those who are determined to prevent disaster damage," noted Director Witt. "When we began Project Impact three years ago, we believed we could reach inside and find the best in communities to prevent disaster damage. Our Project Impact communities - and especially our award winners - are the proof that our vision is gaining momentum. Communities have grown closer and stronger by joining Project Impact."
Project Impact is a nationwide initiative to help change the way America deals with disasters. Over 1,400 citizens, businesses, public officials and emergency managers from communities across America attended the summit, where they gathered to share experiences and ideas for disaster prevention.
Since its inception in 1997, nearly 250 communities and 2,500 business partners have embraced Project Impact. Instead of waiting for disasters to occur, Project Impact communities initiate mentoring relationships, private and public partnerships, public outreach and disaster mitigation projects to reduce damage from potentially devastating disasters. Previous community projects have included creating disaster resistance strategies, revising local building and land use codes, and passing bond issues to construct prevention measures that will impact the entire community.
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