The June 2012 "derecho", Superstorm Sandy, and 2015 spring and summer flooding, severe storms and mudslides are examples of recent events that caused severe damage in the Mid-Ohio Valley region and resulted in Federal disaster declarations.

Flooding, heavy snow, wind, and downed power lines cause damage to property, disrupt our daily routines, close our schools and businesses, and jeopardize the health and safety of citizens. What can be done to minimize our vulnerabilities to natural hazards? The eight counties and 22 municipalities of the Mid-Mid-Ohio Valley Region are taking part in updating the Regional Hazard Mitigation Plan.

The purpose of this Plan is to identify and assess our communities' natural hazard risks and determine activities that can be undertaken before natural hazards occur in order to minimize property damage, risk of life, and the costs that are shared by all. Upon completion, the Plan will represent a comprehensive multi-jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan for the eight-county region.

The Mid-Ohio Valley Regional Council is under agreement with the West Virginia Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management to complete a regional plan which by August 2016 should be adopted by Calhoun, Jackson, Pleasants, Ritchie, Roane, Tyler, Wirt, and Wood counties, and all towns and cities in their borders.

The plan will discuss the occurrence and consequences of floods, winter storms, tornadoes, hurricanes and tropical storms, thunderstorms, landslides, wildfires, earthquakes, dam failures and other natural hazards. The plan will outline the steps that communities can take to mitigate for future natural hazards and plan adoption will ensure that communities remain eligible for certain federal mitigation grant programs.

The Federal Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 requires all localities to develop and adopt a hazard mitigation plan, or participate in and adopt a regional plan, in order to be eligible for funding through the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Hazard Mitigation Grant Program and Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant Program.

In order to gain input to the hazard mitigation plan MOVRC will coordinate or hold public information meetings in each county during the months of February or March (see schedule below) Most of these meetings will be hosted or held in conjunction with each county's Local Emergency Planning Committee, or LEPC. All residents, business owners, and local officials and community leaders are invited to attend and offer ideas for minimizing the damage that occurs and the costs that are borne by our regions communities.

An internet-based survey has been developed to solicit public input or prioritize risk reduction activities by community. Please consider taking the survey even if you cannot attend the public information meeting. This survey can be found at www.surveymonkey.com/r/MOVRC-RiskReduction2016

Help us get feedback by sharing this survey with friends, co-workers, neighbors and family.

For more information, please contact Luke Peters, Project Coordinator at the Mid-Ohio Valley Regional Council at 304-422-4993 ext. 123 or email luke.peters@movrc.org

LEPC/Public Meetings for Hazard Mitigation Plan 2016

Listed by: County - Date - Time - Location

Calhoun - February 16th - 5 PM - Arnoldsburg Community Center

Roane - February 17th - Noon - Roane VFD building

Ritchie - February 23rd - 7 PM - 911 Building, Pennsboro

Wirt - March 1st - 10 AM - Wirt County Commission Room

Tyler - March 3rd - 10 AM - Tyler Senior/OES bldg (9AM LEPC Breakfast)

Jackson - March 21st - 6 PM - Ripley Fire Department

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