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Lamoille County Planning Commission

 

Hazard Mitigation Planning

HAZARD MITIGATION PLANNING: WHAT IS IT?

All-Hazard plans attempt to reduce the impact of expected but unpredictable natural and human-caused hazardous events by developing goals, strategies and local projects/actions to increase the disaster resistance of the region and each local jurisdiction. The list of projects chosen to be completed during the next planning cycle at the regional and local levels may be chosen and prioritized based upon a number of factors including but not limited to, the risk of damage by a particular hazard event, community support, technical feasibility and administrative capacity to undertake the mitigation project, political will, budget constraints, and environmental impact.
 
Mitigation plans are beneficial first and foremost for community preparedness. They are a tool to identify cost effective actions for risk reduction agreed upon by the public and by public officials. Further, mitigation plans also focus resources on the greatest risks and vulnerabilities to the community. They also build partnerships, increase education and awareness of hazards and risks, and align risk reduction with other community objectives, such as economic development or infrastructure maintenance.
 
Starting in 2014, the mitigation plans will also serve two other purposes. First, changes to Vermont’s Emergency Relief and Assistance Fund (ERAF) require an adopted mitigation plan as part of the criteria for a greater state share to match federal disaster relief. Second, changes to municipal plan elements now require municipal plans to address flood resiliency. If it meets statutory requirements, the mitigation plan can now fulfill that municipal plan requirement. Contact LCPC for more information on this requirement. More information can also be found at www.floodready.vermont.gov.
 

HAZARD MITIGATION PLAN UPDATES UNDERWAY

LCPC received funding through FEMA’s Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant Program to update the local hazard mitigation plans of five municipalities. The funding was awarded as part of a statewide grant application with other regional planning commissions to update town hazard mitigation plans. The purpose of mitigation planning is to identify policies and actions that can be implemented over the long term to reduce risk and future losses to property and people.
 
The five Lamoille County towns participating in the plan update process are: Cambridge, Hyde Park, Johnson, Stowe, and Wolcott. These towns were selected for a number of reasons including interest and need. Towns will be responsible for providing data, offering input during drafting, and adopting the plan.
 
The mitigation plans focus on all hazards including natural disasters, chemical spills, and biological threats. Each plan will be tailored to address hazards in that community. Mitigation plans approved by FEMA are valid for five years.
 
All of Lamoille County’s towns participated in a previous hazard mitigation project through the Pre-Disaster Mitigation program in 2005. At that time, there was a multi-jurisdictional plan for Lamoille County with ten annexes, one for each town. Those annexes were updated starting in 2010 but are now set to expire in 2017. Today, the annexes are shifting to standalone, single-jurisdiction plans in order to focus planning efforts for the towns.
 
Other communities in Lamoille County have either received or applied for funding to update their hazard mitigation plans through the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, also funded by FEMA and funneled through Vermont Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security. If your community has not received funding to update its mitigation plan and is interested in doing so, contact LCPC to discuss funding opportunities.
 
Drafts of mitigation plans are posted below.

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The Regional All-Hazard Mitigation Plan and its 10 town “annexes” which were first adopted in 2005 and approved by FEMA in 2006. FEMA requires that the regional plan and its annexes be reviewed, revised and re-adopted both at the local level and by FEMA within 5 years of the original adoption date in order to remain eligible for pre-disaster mitigation, hazard mitigation, and flood mitigation grant funds.
 
Please Note: 2011 Local Hazard Mitigation Plans are located in each of our member town's documents page. To access these pages use the right toolbar on the Homepage and select the individual Town.
 
The goals of the 2011 Lamoille County All-Hazards Mitigation Regional Plan as approved by the LCPC (10/27/11) are:
 
  • Goal 1: Implement State Hazard Mitigation goals as appropriate at the regional and local level.
  • Goal 2: Promote awareness of the relationship between the impacts of disaster events, land uses, and infrastructure.
  • Goal 3: Encourage local hazard mitigation planning and projects.
  • Goal 4: Encourage municipalities to incorporate their Local Hazard Mitigation Plan (LHMP) into their municipal plan and bylaws.
  • Goal 5: Encourage municipalities to incorporate their LHMP projects into their municipal budget and/or capital plan & programs.
  • Goal 6: Plan and implement hazard mitigation projects.
  • Goal 7: Avoid land use investments in conflict with vulnerable areas.
 
To find out more about mitigation planning or provide comments, please contact LCPC at 888-4548 or lcpc@lcpcvt.org.