Thursday, March 12th, 2009

The Morris County Office of Emergency Management has scheduled two public meetings on the county’s Multi-Jurisdictional All-Hazard Mitigation Plan.

The first will be Thursday, April 9, 2009, at 7 p.m. in the auditorium of the Morris County Public Safety Training Academy, 500 West Hanover Ave., in Parsippany. This meeting will give the public the opportunity to comment on the draft mitigation plan.

A second public meeting Thursday, May 14 at 7 p.m., also at the academy, will allow for a final municipal review and will also provide information on adopting the plan.

Morris County’s OEM has been working with the county’s 39 municipalities to develop a comprehensive hazard mitigation plan that will include a risk assessment and a hazard-mitigation strategy that will identify hazard mitigation projects that can reduce the risk of loss of life, injury and property damage from future natural and manmade disasters. According to the Morris County Board of Chosen Freeholders, creation of this plan will allow the county and the participating municipalities to be eligible for future mitigation funding from FEMA.

The plan will identify and lay the ground work for implementing hazard mitigation projects, including those that are eligible for federal funding and those that may not qualify for federal funds but are of clear value to local communities. Additionally, this plan will identify mechanisms for integrating hazard mitigation into other related planning efforts.

The primary natural hazard in Morris County is flooding, but other potential hazards such as drought, extreme cold, extreme heat, snow, ice, hail, windstorms and tornadoes will be included in the planning process.

Following the risk assessment, the county will develop a hazard mitigation strategy that will include the identification of hazard mitigation goals as well as a prioritized list of actions designed to reduce losses.

Information about the mitigation plan is available on the Office of Emergency Web site, WWW.MORRISOEM.ORG.