Local Hazard Mitigation Plan

The purpose of the Local Hazard Mitigation Plan is to reduce or remove long-term risk and protect the people and property of the County from the effects of events like fire, flood, earthquake, terrorism, etc. through planned regular actions. Use of this plan could make Placer County and participating jurisdictions’ eligible for certain federal disaster assistance.

Local Hazard Mitigation Plan

Placer County Local Hazard Mitigation Plan Update

Nationwide, taxpayers annually pay billions of dollars helping communities, organizations, businesses and individuals recover from disaster. Some disasters are predictable and, in many cases, damage can be reduced or eliminated through hazard mitigation planning. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has targeted natural disaster loss reduction as one of its primary goals. Under the Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000, local jurisdictions are required to have a FEMA-approved Local Hazard Mitigation Plan (LHMP) to better position resources in advance of a disaster and to maintain eligibility for certain disaster assistance and hazard mitigation funding programs.

The update of Placer County’s plan update was completed and federally approved in 2016. This update began in April, 2015, with a public meeting and establishment of a planning committee that included representatives of various local agencies and the public from throughout the county. The update assesses risk to natural hazards such as floods, wildfires drought, and other severe weather events; implements actions to reduce future losses; and maintains eligibility for federal mitigation funds. Another benefit of the plan update is to enhance the county and city floodplain management programs that can help reduce flood insurance costs for residents through participation in the National Flood Insurance Program’s Community Rating System.

Hazard Mitigation Plan & Plan Update Process

Mitigation planning is a way for state and local governments to identify community-level policies and actions that will mitigate and reduce the effects of natural hazards. Federal law requires local governments to complete a local hazard mitigation plan every five years to remain eligible for future federal disaster mitigation funding.

After securing FEMA grant funding in 2014, Placer County began the updating/planning project in early 2015. Partners included: the City of Auburn, the City of Colfax, the City of Lincoln, the Town of Loomis, the City of Rocklin, and several Special Districts.  

This LHMP update was developed by a Hazard Mitigation Planning Committee comprised of representatives from various county and city departments; neighboring jurisdictions; federal, state, and local agency stakeholders; and the public.

The Plan addresses an updated list of hazards, including:

  • Agricultural Hazards Such as Pests and Invasive Species
  • Dam Failure
  • Drought and Water Shortage
  • Earthquake
  • Flood
  • Severe Weather
  • Wildfire

The Plan assesses the likely effects of these hazards to county residents and property, and established updated goals and prioritized mitigation projects to reduce the impacts of future disasters on people and property, as well as to critical facilities and infrastructure. The Plan identified steps that help avoid, reduce, alleviate, or mitigate disaster damages. Another benefit of mitigation planning is that it can also help reduce the cost of flood insurance in Placer County through FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program’s Community Rating System.

About Hazard Mitigation

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) defines hazard mitigation as, “any sustained action taken to reduce or eliminate long-term risk to life and property from natural hazards.” Hazard mitigation is the prevention component of the emergency management process.

  • Preparedness activities are the emergency plans, training, drills, and exercises that individuals, communities and first responders participate in on almost a daily basis. These are done to get ready for an actual emergency or disaster before it happens.
  • Responses are the short-term, emergency actions taken to address the immediate effects of a hazard.
  • Recovery is the longer-term process of restoring the community back to normal or pre-disaster conditions.
  • Mitigation activities are actions that prevent or eliminate losses, even if an incident does occur. Mitigation can reduce or eliminate the need for an emergency response and greatly reduce the recovery period.

Why Natural Hazard Mitigation Is Important

Most people who live or work in Placer County have been affected by natural hazards in one way or another. Placer County and its residents are vulnerable to a variety of hazards including floods, dam failure, wildfire, drought, and other severe weather events.

The rising costs associated with disaster response and recovery have focused the attention of federal, state, and local governments on addressing natural hazards before they occur. Obviously, events like torrential rains and floods cannot be prevented from occurring. However, planning for natural hazards and implementing mitigation measures can reduce the impact of such events when they do occur. Emergency response and recovery costs; property damage and monetary losses; personal injury and loss of life; and the overall economic and social impact on the community can all be reduced, and in some instances eliminated, through natural hazard mitigation.

National Flood Insurance Program’s Community Rating System

The National Flood Insurance Program's Community Rating System (CRS) is a voluntary incentive program that recognizes and encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum NFIP requirements. As a result, flood insurance premium rates are discounted to reflect the reduced flood risk resulting from community actions that meet the goals of the CRS Program. The objective of the CRS is to reward communities for what they are doing, as well as to provide an incentive for implementing additional flood protection activities. 

The reduction in flood insurance premium rates is provided according to a community’s CRS classification. Placer County is currently a CRS Class 5, which provides a 25% discount on flood insurance for those located within the special flood hazard area (SFHA) and a 10% discount for those located in non-SFHA areas.

Additional Information

For more information on this project and how to provide input, email Young Rodriguez or call 530-886-5300.