By REBECCA HAZEN
The Dade County Board of Commissioners held a public meeting on Feb. 3 to discuss the proposed Joint City of Trenton-Dade County Hazard Mitigation Plan. This plan is required by the Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000.
“This Hazard Mitigation Plan and the Hazard Mitigation Grant programs have brought several things into our county: the emergency power generation for the water authority and our sewer plant, and currently our storm shelters and the outdoor warning sirens,” Alex Case, Dade County Emergency Services Director, said.
Case noted that state and local governments are required to develop and submit and obtain FEMA approval for Hazard Mitigation Plans. This increases access in funds to local governments and allows them to remain eligible for the Stafford Act.
According to fema.gov, the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act constitutes the statutory authority for most Federal disaster response activities especially as they pertain to FEMA and FEMA programs.
“FEMA gives money to GEMA, and GEMA gives us money, and we hire a consultant to write these plans. The Northwest Georgia Regional Commission did the first plan that I was involved with, when I started with Dade County. Since then, Northwest Georgia Consulting Group has done the plan,” Case said.
Case noted that this plan review is for the 2020 Hazard Mitigation Plan.
“The first public hearing was for Feb. 2019, but then the pandemic hit us. Even with the pandemic, we got the final letter from FEMA on Dec. 6, 2021, confirming that they have completed the final review of the draft of the Dade County Hazard Mitigation Plan,” Case said.
FEMA has determined that the plan is in compliance with federal requirements and subject to formal community adoption.
The Dade County Commissioners held their regular monthly meeting after the public hearing and approved the Hazard Mitigation Plan. The City of Trenton Board of Commissioners will also approve the plan during their next monthly meeting on Feb. 14.
The plan will have to be reviewed and updated again in 2026.