Preventing Major Disasters

Like every one of us, the horrific hurricane, wind and water damage in much of Texas compels our attention no matter where we live. Even now, I am awaiting specific predictions about the path of oncoming Hurricane Irma. I think back to my experience working for many years as a county and city-appointed official in… Read more

Wildfires put lives, health, ecology, property values at risk

A dry summer has led to a spate of Western wildfires that county officials worry will affect health conditions and economic viability for years. And they have not been relegated to rural areas — the Columbia River Gorge went up in flames, bringing smoke into the city of Portland, Ore. The wildfire risk jumped exponentially… Read more

House approves legislation to reauthorize flood insurance program

Although the House and the Senate remain at odds over how to advance legislation that would reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), the House on Nov. 14 approved its measure by a vote of 237–189 along party lines. The legislation, the 21st Century Flood Reform Act (H.R. 2874), combines a series of bills that,… Read more

Roundtable explores building disaster resilience

  County leaders, federal officials and corporate partners met March 2, at NACo to discuss county-driven mitigation efforts that have made communities resilient to disasters. “The issue of resilience is ready for prime time, and the Resilient Counties Initiative is working to build the momentum around this movement as we identify our path forward,” said… Read more

Presentation: Working with State and Federal Partners & Your Business Community for Sustainable Recovery

As counties respond to catastrophic events such as floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and earthquakes, it is important to understand how to best utilize the suite of resources that are available from partners at the Federal and state government levels. It is also critical that counties work with the business community to better coordinate resources and logistical… Read more

CDBG-DR Tips: Understanding Duplication of Benefits

is one of the most difficult aspects of federal disaster recovery funding for both local stakeholders and citizens to grasp. It is a federal law that applies to all federal disaster assistance, including from , the , , and the , among others.  applicants are more likely to have a DOB because they’ve already received funding… Read more

FEMA Training Course List

FEMA’s independent study training courses offerings are one of the most important disaster preparation educational tools for government officials, staff, and other professionals engaged in FEMA efforts during disasters. Below, IBTS provides links to FEMA’s course offerings, organized by disaster phase. Click on the disaster phase to see the listing of course options specific to… Read more

FEMA Training Courses: Disaster Planning Revisions

FEMA’s online independent study course, Exercise Evaluation and Improvement Planning, covers the methodology for completing After Action Reports.   IS-130 — Exercise Evaluation and Improvement Planning

FEMA Training Courses: FEMA Mapping

FEMA currently offers four online independent study courses focused on FEMA mapping and geospatial capabilities related to disaster management.   IS-60.b — The Homeland Security Geospatial Concept-of-Operations (GeoCONOPS) for Planners and Decision Makers IS-61.b — The Homeland Security Geospatial Concept-of-Operations (GeoCONOPS) In Depth IS-62.b — The Homeland Security Geospatial Concept-of-Operations (GeoCONOPS) In Use IS-63.b — Geospatial Information Infrastructure (GII) IS-103 — Geospatial Information Systems… Read more

Role of Section 106 in Disaster Response FAQs

Disaster recovery projects carried out using federal funding, including FEMA, SBA, HUD, and the Buereau of Land Management’s programs, typically must adhere to National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) Section 106 requirements. The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) provides answers to frequently asked questions on the role of Section 106 in disaster recovery programs, in addition… Read more