This page discusses resources for local mitigation planning. Local mitigation plans identify the natural hazards that may affect a single or multiple local jurisdictions, such as a town, city, or county. Plans assess risks and vulnerabilities, identify actions to reduce losses from those hazards identified, and establish a coordinated process to implement the plan using a wide range of public and private investments. This page provides resources for various departments within local governments, including emergency managers, mitigation planners, community and economic development planners, floodplain managers, and other stakeholders to assist in the update of local mitigation plans and support the ongoing local mitigation planning process and implementation.
Mitigation Planning Resources
The following resources can help local governments update their mitigation plans.
- The Local Mitigation Plan Review Guide (2011) FEMA’s policy on and interpretation of the mitigation planning requirements for local mitigation planning. This guide is available in Spanish at Guía de Revisión del Plan Local de Mitigación.
- Local Mitigation Planning Handbook (Handbook) is a tool for local governments to use in developing or updating local hazard mitigation plans. The Handbook offers practical approaches, tools, and examples of how communities can engage in effective planning to reduce long-term risk from natural hazards and disasters. The Handbook complements and references the Local Mitigation Plan Review Guide , FEMA’s official policy on and interpretation of the local hazard mitigation planning requirements in the Code of Federal Regulations (44 CFR Part 201).
- The Local Mitigation Planning Fact Sheet (2012) provides an overview of hazard mitigation planning under FEMA’s National Mitigation Planning Program for local governments.
- Mitigation Ideas: A Resource for Reducing Risk to Natural Hazards provides a resource that local governments can use to identify and evaluate a range of potential mitigation actions for reducing risk to natural hazards and disasters.
- Mitigation Planning and the Community Rating System Key Topics Bulletin identifies ways to make the mitigation planning process and the CRS Program’s Activity 510: Floodplain Management Planning work together for a single, coordinated plan.
For more information or to request training and technical assistance to build mitigation planning capabilities, local officials can contact their local officials can contact their respective State Hazard Mitigation Officer or respective Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Senior Mitigation Planner in the Mitigation Division, Risk Analysis Branch of the appropriate FEMA Regional Office.
Mitigation Planning Regulations and FEMA Assistance Programs
The Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (Stafford Act), as amended, provides the legal basis for local governments to undertake mitigation planning. The Stafford Act requires state, tribal, and local governments to develop and adopt FEMA-approved hazard mitigation plans as a condition for receiving certain types of non-emergency disaster assistance.
Local mitigation planning regulations are established in Title 44 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) §201.6 Local Mitigation Plans. Local governments must review and update their hazard mitigation plan as a condition for receiving the following mitigation project grants under FEMA mitigation grant programs:
- Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP)
- Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) Program
- Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) Program
- Restrictions on Grant Obligations to State, Tribal and Local Governments without a FEMA-Approved Mitigation Plan (2013) describes the implications to state, tribal, and local governments that do not have a FEMA-approved hazard mitigation plan relative to receiving assistance under certain FEMA assistance programs.
- Rehabilitation of High Hazard Potential Dams (HHPD) Grant Program
For more information, please visit the Hazard Mitigation Plan Requirement page.
Further information on FEMA’s Mitigation grant programs is available from the Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) program.
The HMA Program also provides information on grant policy and resources that can assist with the development of planning and project grant applications. More information on the HMA grant programs (HMGP, PDM, and FMA) can be found in the Hazard Mitigation Assistance brochures. Additional resources include:
- Considerations for Local Mitigation Planning Grant Subapplicants guides local communities and tribal subapplicants as they pursue planning grant funding under the Hazard Mitigation Assistance Program.
- Local Mitigation Plan Statement of Work provides a sample Scope of Work for localities as they enter into the planning process.
Local jurisdictions interested in receiving funding from FEMA’s new Rehabilitation of High Hazard Potential Dams (HHPD) Grant Program must include all dam risk in FEMA-approved mitigation plans. HHPDs are defined as those that fail to meet minimum dam safety standards and pose an unacceptable risk to the public. Nonprofit organizations must be located in a jurisdiction with a FEMA-approved local mitigation plan that includes all dam risks in order to receive funds. Additional resources include:
- Identifying High Hazard Dam Risk in the United States
- Dam Considerations in Flood Mapping Studies
- Considering the Residual Risk from Dams in Flood Risk Products
- Risk Communication for Dams in Risk MAP
- Dam Safety Awareness
For more information or to request training and technical assistance to build mitigation planning capabilities, local officials can contact their respective State Hazard Mitigation Officer or FEMA Senior Mitigation Planner in the Mitigation Division of the appropriate FEMA Regional Office.
General Mitigation Resources
- Mitigation Ideas: A Resource for Reducing Risk to Natural Hazards (2013) provides information that communities can use to identify and evaluate a range of potential mitigation actions for reducing risk from natural hazards and disasters.
- Integrating Hazard Mitigation Into Local Planning: Case Studies and Tools for Community Officials (2013) provides practical guidance on how to incorporate risk reduction strategies into existing local plans, policies, codes, and programs that guide community development or redevelopment patterns. The following five fact sheets accompany this document.
- Using the Hazard Mitigation Plan to Prepare Successful Mitigation Projects shows how a community can move from the hazard mitigation plan to developing mitigation projects that may be implemented fully using FEMA Hazard Mitigation Assistance, as appropriate.
- Integrating Historic Property and Cultural Resource Considerations into Hazard Mitigation Planning (2005) shows communities how to develop and implement a pre-disaster planning strategy for historic properties and cultural resources.
- Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment site provides information and resources for conducting a hazard identification and risk assessment.
- Hazard Mitigation Planning Training provides an outline of the training available for mitigation planning, including the 2-day G-318: Local Mitigation Planning Workshop. For local, in-person trainings host by FEMA, contact the appropriate FEMA Regional Office or State Hazard Mitigation Officer.