County looks to Damage Control before the Damage

The Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 requires all counties, states, and tribal reservations to develop a Natural Hazards Disaster Mitigation.  This must be accomplished by November first of this year.  If not submitted the county or state would not be eligible for mitigation aid.  Officials with Craighead county got started with their plan Wednesday morning.

911 coodinator David Moore says mitigation is the ,"process of preparing for a disaster by improving infrastructure."  For Craighead county this mainly means improving flooding conditions.  Just two years ago Jonesboro was trasformed into a giant water world as four and a half inches of rain fell on the city in less than an hour.  Through mitigation efforts, city officials hope they will never see a repeat of those events.

Obviusly mitigation is important.  But even more vital to towns, cities and counties using mitigation is federal funding for the programs.  Mitigation efforts are not cheap but over time pay for themselves.  This is why it is so important the county keep the availability of these government funds.

Moore also says mitigation is not the same as disaster relief.  Mitigation is given out after a disaster not for repairing what was destroyed but for making sure it will not be destroyed again.  Mitigation can range from safe rooms in homes, earth quake proofing homes, and flood proofing areas.

One of the keys to the plan is public involvement.  Geofemme owner Rusti Liner says she was impressed with the crowd.  Adding it was about double what she was expecting.  In all representatives from almost every Craighead town or zone was present including several mayors.