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Hazard Mitigation Planning

This page introduces hazard mitigation planning and describes its benefits. The intended audience is state, tribal, and local officials and members of the public interested in hazard mitigation planning.

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Overview

Hazard mitigation is the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters. It is most effective when implemented under a comprehensive, long-term mitigation plan. State, tribal, and local governments engage in hazard mitigation planning to identify risks and vulnerabilities associated with natural disasters, and develop long-term strategies for protecting people and property from future hazard events. Mitigation plans are key to breaking the cycle of disaster damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage.

Developing hazard mitigation plans enables state, tribal, and local governments to:

  • Increase education and awareness around threats, hazards, and vulnerabilities;
  • Build partnerships for risk reduction involving government, organizations, businesses, and the public;
  • Identify long-term, broadly-supported strategies for risk reduction;
  • Align risk reduction with other state, tribal, or community objectives;
  • Identify implementation approaches that focus resources on the greatest risks and vulnerabilities; and
  • Communicate priorities to potential sources of funding.

Moreover, a FEMA-approved hazard mitigation plan is a condition for receiving certain types of non-emergency disaster assistance, including funding for mitigation projects. Ultimately, hazard mitigation planning enables action to reduce loss of life and property, lessening the impact of disasters.

This page outlines new guidance resources, news, and events related to hazard mitigation planning. The intended audiences for this page include hazard mitigation planners, emergency management professionals, as well as state, tribal, and local officials.

Hazard Mitigation Planning News and Events

Tribal Mitigation Plan Review Guide Now Effective

On December 5, 2017, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) released the Tribal Mitigation Plan Review Guide (Tribal Guide). This Guide, which went effective on December 5, 2018, is FEMA’s official policy on the natural hazard mitigation planning requirements for tribal hazard mitigation plans in accordance with the Robert T. Stafford Act and Title 44 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 201. Tribal governments engage in the mitigation planning process to identify risks and vulnerabilities associated with natural disasters and establish a long-term strategy for protecting people and property in future hazard events. A FEMA-approved tribal mitigation plan is one of the conditions of eligibility for certain FEMA assistance, such as Public Assistance Categories C through G and Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) grants. The Tribal Guide is available in the FEMA library at https://www.fema.gov/media-library/assets/documents/18355.

Mitigation Planning and the Community Rating System (CRS) Key Topics Bulletin Released

FEMA Mitigation Planning and Floodplain Management recently partnered to publish the Mitigation Planning and the Community Rating System Key Topics Bulletin. This new publication helps match local mitigation plan requirements with the Community Rating System Program’s Activity 510: Floodplain Management Planning. The Bulletin assumes the perspective of the mitigation planner and identifies ways to make the two processes work together for a single, coordinated plan. It is intended for local governments to use to improve their local mitigation plans and leverage the insurance benefits of the CRS to advance mitigation outcomes. This one-plan approach can save time and add value for local communities.

Interactive Plan Status Map

The Hazard Mitigation Plan Status page now has a new link to an interactive, searchable map where users can zoom and look up communities on a daily-refreshed map. The static map on the Plan Status page still serves as the authoritative source for plan status information, but this interative map provides an additional source for more individualized information and risk communuication.

Planning-Related Activities Fact Sheet Now Available

The FEMA Mitigation Planning program in coordination with FEMA Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) announces the release of a new fact sheet, Planning-Related Activities Using Hazard Mitigation Grant Program 7 Percent Funding (May 2018). The new fact sheet encourages the use of planning-related activities funding available from Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP). It is intended for state, tribal, and/or local governments to use to improve mitigation plans and leverage related activities to advance mitigation efforts and outcomes.

Considerations for Local Mitigation Planning Grant Subapplicants Job Aid

The Considerations for Local Mitigation Planning Grant Subapplicants Job Aid is available to help subapplicants (local communities and tribes applying for assistance through the state) as they pursue planning grant funding through the Hazard Mitigation Assistance Programs. Using a question-and-answer format, the Job Aid is intended to help subapplicants think through the tasks and costs with the goal of encouraging strong, comprehensive planning grant subapplications.

Mitigation Planning Information Exchange Webinars

FEMA continues to partner with the American Planning Association (APA) and the Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM) to offer a free quarterly webinar series to share challenges, best practices, and evolving methods and techniques in hazard mitigation planning. The purpose of the webinar series is to encourage peer-to-peer learning and the exchange of information among a national and international audience.

The Planning Information Exchange (PIE) focuses on multi-hazard mitigation planning, and it also emphasizes the connections with recovery planning and preparedness. APA and ASFPM are co-conveners of all webinars and select topics and presenters. Participants can earn one continuing education credit through APA and ASFPM.

The latest PIE on "Flood Economics" occured February 13, 2019 at 2 PM ET. To view recordings of this and other prior webinars, visit the APA website. This most recent webinar addressed new insights into flood loss avoidance based on a series of community case studies and a wide-ranging analysis into over 20,000 flood mitigation projects spanning all 50 states and Puerto Rico. The presentation also presented the business case for flood mitigation and what that means for local planning, as well as lessons learned from planners and floodplain professionals on the economics of flood mitigation.

Mitigation Planning Program Resource List

The Mitigation Planning Program Resource List is available as a resource for state, local, and tribal governments that engage in mitigation planning to help identify risks associated with natural disasters and to develop long-term strategies for protecting people and property from future hazard events. Mitigation plans are key to breaking the cycle of disaster damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage. This list provides communities resources to help guide the development and implementation of their hazard mitigation plans. 

Additional Information

Please visit the Hazard Mitigation Assistance page for more information on funding available for mitigation plan development and mitigation projects.

Last Updated: 
04/17/2019 - 16:31