By Kathleen Smith, Mitigation Planning Team Lead
Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration staff celebrated October as National Community Planning Month. National Community Planning Month is an annual event sponsored by the American Planning Association and is an opportunity to highlight the contributions sound planning and plan implementation make to the resilience of our communities.
FIMA held a virtual panel on Oct. 17th on FEMA’s Role in Community Planning. The mitigation planning program office moderated a discussion with opening remarks by FIMA Associate Administrator David Miller, and panelists including Jim Schwab, Manager of the APA Hazards Planning Research Center, Roy Wright, Deputy Division Director of the FIMA Risk Analysis Division, and Matt Campbell, Chief of the Capacity Building Branch in the Office of Response and Recovery.
FIMA staff participated in a book club discussion of Isaac's Storm, A Man, a Time, and the Deadliest Hurricane in History by Erik Larson on Oct. 24th. Staff members shared their thoughts on community planning in the face of natural hazards.
The Risk Analysis Division Mitigation Planning program hosted a FIMA Planning Open House on Oct. 31st at FEMA Headquarters. The office fostered a discussion on FEMA’s influences on state, local and Tribal planning and how planning influenced communities impacted by Hurricane Sandy.
The celebration of National Community Planning Month gave us the opportunity to recognize our state, local, federal and tribal partners who have contributed their time and expertise to improving the sustainability and resilience of their communities through planning activities. Community planning provides an opportunity for all residents to hold an essential role in making choices that determine the future and preparedness of their community.
FEMA’s mission is "to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from and mitigate all hazards." Planning is a critical function of what we do and how we assist communities. Preparedness, Recovery, Response and Mitigation all conduct planning aimed at accomplishing FEMA’s mission.
Visit the American Planning Association Hazards Planning Research Center or the American Planning Association Recovery News Blog at APA Recovery News Blog for more information on how the Association assists with education and research.