Task 4: Community Capability Review

Types of Capabilities

Following are the primary capabilities types that are relevant to accomplishing long-term risk cuts with the help of mitigation planning:
• Planning and regulatory
• Administrative and technical
• Financial
• Education and outreach

Additional capability types can be identified by the planning team that are relevant to mitigation planning.

1.) Planning and Regulatory
These capabilities are based on the execution of policies, ordinances, State statutes, plans, and programs, as well as local laws that concern managing and guiding development and growth. Certain planning capabilities may either enable or restrain mitigation, for example, capital improvements programs, comprehensive land use plans, small area development plans, transportation plans, emergency preparedness, and response plans, and disaster revival and rebuilding plans. Mitigation plans explain particular policies or activities that drive decisions and support community objectives. Similarly, the regulatory capabilities include the subdivision regulations, enforcement of zoning laws, as well as the creation of codes that legalize how and where structures are built and the land is developed. Both planning and regulatory capabilities refer to the existing plans and regulations, as well as the ability of the community to modify and improve the current plans and regulations as required.

2.) Administrative and Technical
These capabilities refer to the staff of the community, their skills, and expertise that can be used for the development of the hazard plan and to execute certain mitigation actions. These capabilities also refer to the skills to efficiently coordinate and access these resources. Consider the types of staff associated with each jurisdiction, the resources of the public and private sectors that may be put into use to execute mitigation actions in your community, and the technical expertise and level of knowledge from all these sources. For example, engineers, emergency managers, planners, GIS analysts, floodplain managers, grant writers, building inspectors, and more. Capacity should also be taken into account for jurisdictions with limited staff resources. It’s possible that staff members with specific skills may not be able to devote to additional work tasks due to the lack of energy and time.

Available resources can be identified by the planning team through government entities like special districts or counties that may offer technical assistance to the communities with inadequate resources. For instance, a small township may consult county planners, a regional planning agency, or engineers to support and provide assistance to its mitigation planning efforts. Assessing administrative and technical capabilities for large jurisdictions may involve identifying particular staff in various departments that possess the skills and their availability to support hazard mitigation activities. The administrative capability can also be affected by the extent of inter-governmental coordination among departments.

3.) Financial

Such capabilities represent the resources available that can be accessed or used by a jurisdiction to fund its mitigation planning efforts. The expenses associated with the implementation of the mitigation plan may vary. Developing assessment or outreach efforts are some examples of mitigation actions that need little to no costs except existing operational budgets and staff availability. Activities like the possession of flood-prone properties may need a significant monetary commitment from the state, federal, and local funding sources. Certain local agencies may have a recurring revenue source other than sales, property, and income taxes (e.g. development impact or stormwater utility fees). They may utilize the funds to support mitigation efforts autonomously or on a cost-share basis often necessary for grant funding.

4.) Education and Outreach
Such capabilities denote the education and outreach methods and programs that could be utilized to communicate hazard-related information and execute mitigation actions. For example, fire safety programs delivered by fire departments at local schools; conducting activities like hazard awareness campaigns, for example, Flood or Tornado Awareness Month; and involvement in community programs like StormReady or Firewise. Certain communities carry out their outreach activities using their own communications or public information office.

Core Capabilities for Mitigation
Capabilities can be explained or assembled in several ways. The capabilities necessary for mitigation plan needs to diminish the impacts of disasters to lessen the loss of life and property. By initiating the mitigation planning process, your community has already exhibited a unique set of capabilities. The National Preparedness Goal, First Edition sets the core capabilities required for mitigation differently, and the Mitigation Planning process explained at 44 CFR §201.6 integrates and facilitates local communities to develop each of the following core capabilities:
• Preparation through the mitigation planning process at 44 CFR §201.6
• Public information and warning through public involvement, and education and outreach. (see Task 3, Create an Outreach Strategy)
• Coordination of the operation through the mitigation strategy and incorporation into other planning efforts (see Task 6, Develop a Mitigation Strategy); plan implementation (see Task 9, Create a Safe and Resilient Community); and maintenance plan (see Task 7, Keep the Plan Current).
• Community resilience through leadership, public participation, and partnerships (see Tasks 1-3 and Task 9, Create a Safe and Resilient Community)
• Reducing long-term risks through identified mitigation actions to diminish or eliminate risks to threats and hazards (see Task 6, Develop a Mitigation Strategy and Task 9, Create a Safe and Resilient Community)
• Evaluating risk and disaster resilience through threat and hazard risk appraisals (see Task 5, Conduct a Risk Assessment)
• Identification of threats and hazard through threat and hazard risk appraisals (See Task 5, Conduct a Risk Assessment)