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Despite challenge of pandemic, county to unveil hazard mitigation plan

WOOD RIVER — Madison County is holding a public forum next week to prepare to update its Multi-Jurisdictional All Hazards Mitigation Plan.

“This plan describes how the county and the participating jurisdictions are impacted by severe weather and other natural hazards,” Mary Kate Brown deputy director of Madison County Emergency Management Agency, said. “It identifies specific mitigation actions that can be taken to reduce damages to life and health, infrastructure, and property before events occur.”

The public forum will be conducted at 2 p.m., Thursday, May 14. People may participate in the public forum by contacting Brown at (618) 296-5907 or

The Madison County All Hazards Mitigation Planning Committee prepared the draft plan with technical assistance from state and federal agencies as well as a consultant specializing in emergency management planning.  The Committee is comprised of representatives from various county departments in addition to Alhambra, Alton, Bethalto, Collinsville, East Alton, Edwardsville, Glen Carbon, Godfrey, Granite City, Grant Fork, Hamel, Highland, Livingston, Madison, Marine, Maryville, Pontoon Beach, Troy, Venice, Wood River, and Worden.

The committee began meeting last fall to prepare the plan update. Federal law requires that plans be updated every five years.

Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the public forum changed format.

“In order for us to maintain social distancing practices we’ve had to move everything to online and over the phone,” Brown said.  “It’s a first for us, but the county has been doing meetings via teleconference for a while now so we are confident that this will go smoothly.”

Individuals can review the plan update and comment without participating in the public forum. The plan is available for public review from May 14 to May 21.

The plan update, along with a summary sheet and a comment survey, can be viewed on the EMA page of the county’s website. Anyone unable to access the plan online can contact the EMA office to schedule an appointment to view a paper copy.

The comment period will remain open through Thursday, May 21. Public comments will be used to make any revisions needed before the plan is submitted to the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and FEMA

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