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2016 EMAT Symposium Presentations

Below are links to some of the presentations given at the EMAT Symposium in February:

 

Disaster and Faith Based Organizations

Military Deployments & Emergency Management

Resilience Implementation Process

The Responder Emergency Manager

The Ups and Downs of Elevation Projects in FMA

Challenges of Emergency Communication Networks for Disaster Response

Mitigation That Pays Off

 

 


 

EMAT Board of Directors Spotlight

Keeping our public officials, stakeholders and residents informed about emergencies is the most important thing I do on a day-to-day basis, but not the only thing. Greetings, my name is Francisco Sanchez, also known as the @DisasterPIO for Harris County.
 
As Treasurer for the Emergency Management Association of Texas, I am working with the board and our members to strengthen the association so it can do more to serve our profession and the people of Texas.  We are implementing nationally-recognized best practices for non-profits to keep us financially strong, and growing.
 
The Emergency Management Association of Texas helps give me the tools, and professional support, to do my job.
 
I am the liaison and public information officer for the Harris County Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Management. I’ve been with Harris County for 12 years, leading our emergency public information efforts and the Regional Joint Information Center. Currently I serve on the Federal Communication Commission’s Communications Security Reliability and Interoperability Council, working on effective ways to alert the public about disasters. In my spare time I am a volunteer firefighter with the Ponderosa Volunteer Fire Department and am involved in the leadership of several professional organizations. I serve on the board of a non-profit that connects foster children with safe, loving homes and teaches them the skills to heal and find success.  I’m an advocate for animal rescue, low cost spay/neuter programs and an avid dog lover - especially of one named Winston.
 
If there’s anything I can do for you, feel free to email at francisco.sanchez@oem.hctx.net.


 

 


 


President's Message

 

PRESS RELEASE FROM THE
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION OF TEXAS (EMAT)

EMAT supports the position of the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) regarding the misuse of the term "Emergency Manager".

The Emergency Management Association of Texas encourages all Texas emergency management professionals to share IAEM's recent press release (attached) with their friends, family, and professional colleagues.  Most importantly, we encourage our members to share it with local and regional media outlets to ensure the widest distribution possible.  EMAT leadership has been involved with the team at IAEM in examining this issue for quite some time, and we agree that this is not just a Michigan issue, but one that can and will affect our profession nation-wide if not clarified quickly and effectively.

The Flint water crisis has created a troubling issue for emergency management professionals.  The media's use of the term "emergency manager" to describe the "emergency financial managers" at the center of the issue has led to substantial confusion nation-wide about the role of "real" emergency managers.  All across the US, dedicated emergency managers are facing questions about their role as a result of this misplaced publicity, and in many cases these questions are indicative of a wavering trust in our field on the part of the public that is completely undeserved.

EMAT leadership hopes that Texans will understand the difference between emergency managers and the misuse in Michigan, because it especially matters here in Texas. "As the nation's most disaster-prone state, and with the finest and most experienced emergency managers found anywhere, we in Texas have quite a bit at risk", said EMAT President Jeb Lacey.  "Texas emergency managers know that we depend on the fact that our communities trust in us and in our organizations.  It is that trust that enables us to serve our communities effectively.  Anything that degrades that trust without cause is an issue we need to take seriously."  

As former EMAT Board Member Jeff Braun recently said in his blog, emergency managers are "dedicated public servants who are focused on saving lives, preventing injuries, and protecting property when a disaster occurs" (blog.fbcoem.org).  This is substantially different than the positions the term is being used to describe in Michigan, which were created to manage a communities financial issues if the community was failing to do so on their own.  It is up to us to stop the confusion, and to ask for assistance in doing so from any source necessary.

EMAT looks forward to supporting you in your efforts to clarify this situation for your communities and protect the reputation of our profession that we have put so many decades into building.  

Questions or media inquiries relating to this release may be forwarded to ematinfotx@gmail.com.

IAEM_Comments_on_Emergency_.docx

Jeb B. Lacey, MPA, TEM
President
   

 


Recent News

The SB 1574/emergency response employee or volunteer rules (Chapter 97.11 – 97.12) will be published in the February 26, 2016 issue of the Texas Register.
 
You can access the Texas Register online at http://www.sos.state.tx.us/texreg/index.shtml
  

On February 2, 2016, President Barack Obama issued Executive Order: Establishing a Federal Earthquake Risk Management Standard.
 
The Order applies to buildings within the United States and its territories and possessions that are owned, leased, financed, or regulated by the Federal Government and requires agencies that own an existing Federal building adopt the Standards of Seismic Safety for Existing Federally Owned and Leased Buildings (Standards), issued by the Interagency Committee on Seismic Safety in Construction (ICSSC).
 
The Order will apply to certain provisions of the Stafford Act when assistance actions involve new construction or alterations to an existing building.
 
Here is the link to the Executive Order:
 
https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/02/02/executive-order-establishing-federal-earthquake-risk-management-standard
 

FEMA Public Assistance Program and Policy Guide
 
FEMA has released the First Edition of the FEMA Public Assistance Program and Policy Guide.
 
This publication combines all Public Assistance (PA) policy into a single volume and provides an overview of the PA Program implementation process with links to other publications and documents that provide additional process details.
 
This document incorporates and supersedes language from PA Program publications and 9500 Series documents listed in Appendix L: List of Publications and Documents Superseded.

FEMA has merged and streamlined the language in the guide to:
 
·        Provide clear and concise policy language to minimize multiple interpretations;
·        Increase consistent and efficient PA Program eligibility determinations of Applicants, facilities, work, and costs, thereby minimizing appeals;
·        Eliminate duplicative language and redundancy; and
·        Provide ease in searching for policy language on specific topics.
 
The language in this document also includes updates based on Title 2 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards. Title 2 CFR Part 200 combined and superseded eight OMB Circulars. It also superseded 44 CFR § 13.36.

Here is a link to the policy guide:

http://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/1447547884514-ca8a60051e18cca2d85f32f650fbfc32/PA_Program_and_Policy_Guide_FINAL.pdf
 

Community Resilience Planning Guide for Building and Infrastructure Systems

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) published the two volume Community Resilience Planning Guide for Building and Infrastructure Systems.  The Planning Guides provide a practical and flexible approach to help communities improve their resilience by setting priorities and allocating resources to manage risks for their prevailing hazards.
 
A fictional community, Riverbend, illustrates the six-step process and how disaster resilience can be integrated into community planning.   The first version of the Guide was released on October 29, 2015, and may be updated periodically as new best practices and research results become available and as communities gain experience using the guide and recommend improvements.
 
Here is the link to Volume 1:  http://www.nist.gov/el/resilience/upload/NIST-SP-1190v1.pdf
 
Here is the link to Volume 2:  http://www.nist.gov/el/resilience/upload/NIST-SP-1190v2.pdf  

 

84th Legislative Session Charges 

The interim Charges for the 84th Legislative Session have been released.
               
Here is the link to the charges:
http://www.house.state.tx.us/_media/pdf/interim-charges-84th.pdf

 

FEMA Animal-Related Independent Study Courses

On October 2, 2015, FEMA released two revised animal-related Independent Study Courses:
 
    IS-10.A - Animals in Disasters:  Awareness and Preparedness
    IS-11.A - Animals in Disasters:  Community Planning
 
Here are the links to the courses:
 
    https://training.fema.gov/is/courseoverview.aspx?code=IS-10.a
 
    https://training.fema.gov/is/courseoverview.aspx?code=IS-11.a 

   

NOAA Extreme Weather Information Sheets

 

Every year NOAA publishes the NOAA Extreme Weather Information Sheets (NEWIS) for the Atlantic Hurricane Season.  Information sheets are prepared for the Gulf and Atlantic States, US Caribbean Territories, and the Hawaiian Islands.  The sheets can be downloaded from the NOAA website or laminated copies are distributed through local NWS forecast Offices to the general public.

 

Here is the link to the Texas Information Sheet:

https://service.ncddc.noaa.gov/rdn/www/activities/weather-ready-nation/newis/documents/Texas.pdf


FEMA's 2015 National Preparedness Report (NPR)

FEMA and its partners has released the 2015 National Preparedness Report (NPR). The NPR is an annual status report summarizing the Nation's progress toward reaching the 2011 National Preparedness Goal of a secure and resilient nation. This report marks the fourth iteration of the NPR. The 2015 NPR places particular emphasis on highlighting preparedness progress in implementing the National Planning Frameworks. The Frameworks describe how the whole community works together to achieve the Goal.

 

The 2015 report identifies 43 key findings across the Prevention, Protection, Mitigation, Response, and Recovery mission areas, in addition to six key overarching findings listed below:

 

•                    Recent events, including the epidemic of Ebola virus disease, have highlighted challenges with coordinating the response to and recovery from complex incidents that do not receive Stafford Act declarations.

•                    Businesses and public-private partnerships are increasingly incorporating emergency preparedness into technology platforms, such as Internet and social media tools and services.

•                    Environmental Response/Health and Safety, Intelligence and Information Sharing, and Operational Coordination are additional core capabilities to sustain, which are capabilities in which the Nation has developed acceptable levels of performance for critical tasks, but which face potential performance declines if not maintained and updated to address new challenges.

•                    Cybersecurity, Housing, Infrastructure Systems, and Long-term Vulnerability Reduction remained national areas for improvement, and Economic Recovery re-emerged as an area for improvement from 2012 and 2013. Access Control and Identity Verification is a newly identified national area for improvement.

•                    Perspectives from states and territories on their current levels of preparedness were similar to previous years. All 10 core capabilities with the highest self-assessment results in 2012 and 2013 remained in the top-10 for 2014; Cybersecurity continues to be the lowest-rated core capability in state and territory self-assessments.

•                    While Federal departments and agencies individually assess progress for corrective actions identified during national-level exercises and real-world incidents, challenges remain to comprehensively assess corrective actions with broad implications across the Federal Government.

 

The NPR presents a national perspective, highlighting the contributions to preparedness made by the whole community—namely, Federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial governments, the private and nonprofit sectors, faith-based organizations, communities, and individuals. The report also integrates data from the annual Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment process and State Preparedness Reports from the 56 states and territories. FEMA also conducted research to identify any recent independent evaluations, surveys, and other data related to the core capabilities.

 

For a copy of the full report go to: https://www.fema.gov/national-preparedness-report

Questions can be directed to FEMA at: NPR@fema.dhs.gov.

For more information on national preparedness efforts, visit: http://www.fema.gov/national-preparedness.

 

 

FEMA 2015 EMPG Program NOFO 


https://www.fema.gov/media-library/assets/documents/103656

 

 

Court Orders FEMA to Reinstate $21.8 Million in Federal Disaster Assistance Funds

To the Membership:

The following information was provided by our partners at IAEM.  Neither IAEM nor EMAT endorses the firm that has provided this brief.  Feel free to review and use at your own discretion.

http://www.bakerdonelson.com/FCWSite/abc.aspx?url=http%3a%2f%2fwww.bakerdonelson.com%2fpublications%2fdetail.aspx%3fpublication%3d1548b401-8cd6-418f-8c5f-8b2f71173358%26mode%3dpp%26media%3dpdf

Regards,

Jeb B. Lacey, CEM, TEM
President, Emergency Management Association of Texas

  

 
Infectious Disease Event
 
This Fact Sheet describes the scope of assistance that may be provided under a Robert T. Stafford 
Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, as amended (Stafford Act)
emergency declaration in response to a domestic infectious disease event. Any action
taken by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), in response to an infectious disease event will be within the context of an integrated whole community all hazards approach and in coordination with other agency authorities and activities that would have a primary role in these incidents, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and its Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  In order to assist States, Tribes and U.S. Territories in assessing impacts and evaluating the need for Federal assistance in an infectious disease event, FEMA has developed these guidelines for requesting an emergency declaration.

 

As part of an all hazards approach, the key roles and responsibilities across the whole community for any threat or hazard - including infectious disease - are contained in the national planning frameworks for prevention, protection, mitigation, response, and recovery.  Supporting federal interagency operational plans (FIOPs) include a more detailed concept of operations; description of critical tasks and responsibilities; detailed resource, personnel, and sourcing requirements; and specific provisos for the rapid integration of resources and personnel appropriate for responding to Public Health events.

Please see the link below for the emergency declaration, eligible assistance and the ORR fact sheet:

https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/

Click on Office of Response & Recovery, then Click on Fact Sheet

 

Hazardous Mitigation Grants Program

 

The Hazard Mitigation Grant Program provides grants to state, local, tribal and territorial governments to implement long-term hazard mitigation measures after a major disaster declaration. The purpose of the HMGP is to reduce the loss of life and property due to natural disasters and to enable mitigation measures to be implemented during the immediate recovery from a disaster.

 

An eligible applicant may appeal any FEMA determination regarding applications submitted for funding under the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program. The appeal process allows applicants to request a reconsideration of the decision in conformity with program requirements. There are two levels of appeals. The Regional Administrator decides first appeals. If FEMA denies the appeal at the Regional Administrator’s level, the applicant may submit a second appeal to the Deputy Associate Administrator for Mitigation at FEMA Headquarters. If FEMA approves an appeal, FEMA will take the appropriate action to implement the decision. If the second appeal is denied, the decision is final.

 

To provide an effective means to research and track appeals, FEMA developed a web based database that can be accessed online. The online Appeals Database is a searchable database containing FEMA responses to applicant appeals for assistance. The database houses HMGP second appeal records since 1988 and first level appeals since the release of the FY2011 Hazard Mitigation Assistance guidance. In 2011, FEMA started monitoring first appeals made in the regions. The purpose of the database is to inform the public on how program requirements are applied. The database can be accessed at: http://www.fema.gov/hazard-mitigation-grant-program/hmgp-appeals.

  

For more information on the terms used in the appeal database and a brief summary of the basic program elements, users can reference the Hazard Mitigation Assistance Program Digest.

 

FEMA Hazard Mitigation Assistance datasets are also available through OpenFEMA.

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New Version of FEMA  Resource Typing Library Tool Released

FEMA has released the first version of the Resource Typing Library Tool (RTLT). The RTLT is an online catalogue of national resource typing definitions and job titles/position qualifications. Definitions and job titles/position qualifications are easily searchable and discoverable through the RTLT.

The Resource Typing Library Tool is publically accessible at: https://rtlt.ptaccenter.org

 




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