Proposed Definitions

Proposed Definitions

The following definitions are drawn from the Palm Beach County Post-Disaster Redevelopment Plan:

  • Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan. Operations plan required under Section 252.38(1), Florida Statutes, that define the organizational structure, chain of command, and operational procedure for the preparation, response and recovery and mitigation efforts associated with an emergency. The Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan includes a basic plan as well as a recovery annex and a mitigation annex.
  • Disaster. Any natural, technological, or civil emergency that causes damage of sufficient severity and magnitude to result in a declaration of a state of emergency by a county, the Governor, or the President of the United States. Disasters shall be identified by the severity of resulting damage, as follows:
    • "Catastrophic disaster" means a disaster that will require massive state and federal assistance, including immediate military involvement.
    • "Major disaster" means a disaster that will likely exceed local capabilities and require a broad range of state and federal assistance.
    • "Minor disaster" means a disaster that is likely to be within the response capabilities of local government and to result in only a minimal need for state or federal assistance (Chapter 252.34, Florida Statutes).
  • Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS). The term used in Florida for the local government hazard mitigation plans required by the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act. Pursuant to the federal Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 (Public Law 106-390), state and local government must development hazard mitigation plans as a condition of federal grant assistance. The LMS is a community plan to promote hazard mitigation that includes a guiding principles section, a vulnerability assessment, and mitigation initiatives, as well as capital projects.
  • Long-term Redevelopment. The process of returning all aspects of the community to normal functions and, to the extent possible, to conditions improved over those that existed before the disaster. Long-term redevelopment is the period where improvements and mitigation activities such as strengthening building codes, changing land use and zoning designations, improving transportation corridors, replacing affordable housing stock, and restoring economic development activity are considered. Other changes such as quality of life improvements can take place during long-term redevelopment.
  • Post-Disaster Redevelopment Plan (PDRP). A plan that is required for coastal communities by Rule 9J-5.012(3)(b)8., Florida Administrative Code, and encouraged for inland communities by Section 163.3177(7)(l), Florida Statutes. The purpose of the plan is to act as a single reference for guiding decision-making and action during the difficult disaster recovery period, as well as detailing actions that can be taken before a disaster strikes to speed the recovery process. It addresses disaster recovery and redevelopment issues with long-term implications.
  • Reconstruction. The long-term process of rebuilding a community's destroyed or damaged housing stock, commercial and industrial buildings, public facilities, and infrastructure.
  • Response. Activities that address the immediate and short-term effects of an emergency or disaster. Response activities are contained within the Emergency Support Functions of the Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan and include immediate actions to save lives, protect property, meet basic human needs, and restore water, sewer, and other essential services.
  • Short-term recovery. Encompass such activities as damage assessments, public information, temporary housing, utility restoration and debris clearance. Short-term recovery does not include the redevelopment of the built environment, economic sector, or normal social networks. Emergency repairs and minor reconstruction, however, will occur during this period.

The following definitions are drawn from the Planning Advisory Service report Holistic Disaster Recovery and FEMA:

  • Emergency period. The period commencing immediately with the onset of a natural disaster during which a community's normal operations, such as communications, transportation, and commerce, are disrupted or halted, and ending when danger from the hazard itself has ceased and initial response activities, such as search and rescue and debris clearance and removal, have commenced, at which point the community can begin to restore normal services and functions.
  • Emergency response plan. A document that contains information on the actions that may be taken by a governmental jurisdiction to protect people and property before, during, and after a disaster.
  • Mitigation. Sustained actions taken to reduce or eliminate long-term risk to people and property from hazards and their effects.
  • Planning for post-disaster reconstruction. The process of planning (preferably before an actual disaster) the steps a community will take to implement long-term reconstruction with one of the primary goals being to reduce or minimize its vulnerability to future disasters. These measures can include a wide variety of land use planning tools, such as acquisition, design review, zoning, and subdivision review procedures. It can also involve coordination with other types of plans and agencies but is distinct from planning for emergency operations, such as the restoration of utility service and basic infrastructure.
  • Preparedness. Ensures that people are ready for a disaster and will respond to it effectively; it includes steps taken to decide what to do if essential services break down, developing a plan for contingencies, and practicing that plan.
  • Recovery. The process of getting back to normal after a disaster. It includes restoring public or utility services (electricity, water, communications, and public transportation), perhaps starting during but extending beyond the emergency period. Short-term recovery does not include the reconstruction of the built environment, although reconstruction may commence during this period. Long-term recovery (see reconstruction) is the process of returning all aspects of the community to normal functioning and, to the extent possible, to conditions improved over those that existed before the disaster.