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Emergency Management Plan Receives FEMA Approval

For Immediate Release

September 20, 2019

Noem Contact: Kristin Wileman

 DPS Contact: Tony Mangan


Emergency Management Plan Receives FEMA Approval


PIERRE, S.D. – Governor Kristi Noem today announced that South Dakota’s Hazard Mitigation Plan received FEMA approval, allowing the State to receive additional funds in the event of future presidential disaster declarations. South Dakota is one of 13 states that have received this designation.


“It's been a difficult year for South Dakota. As a State, we need to make sure we’re doing everything possible to help communities recover, but we also need to better prepare for extreme weather in the future,” said Noem. “Achieving this FEMA approval is not an easy task, and I’m grateful for the work of our Emergency Management team that made it possible. This will be a valuable tool for our State during future storms.”


“In order to receive FEMA approval, we had to demonstrate that we’d developed a comprehensive mitigation plan and could manage the increased funding that accompanies the approval,” said Tina Titze, director of the state’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM). “This is a major achievement for our program, and it will be extremely beneficial as we respond to future disasters.”


Mitigation programs focus on reducing or eliminating damage and injuries if the same disaster occurs again in the same area. Mitigation plans identify an area’s most likely hazards and document projects that can better protect life and property against those hazards. Mitigation grant funds awarded to a state following a presidential disaster declaration can then fund those mitigation projects that can include removing homes from areas susceptible to flooding, constructing tornado saferooms, or burying overhead powerlines. 


Craig Price, Secretary of the Department of Public Safety, said the new plan is part of the continuing efforts to always be ready to address future disaster situations.


“We can’t control tornadoes, floods or other disasters from happening, but we can influence the severity of a disaster’s impact through pre-disaster mitigation planning, principles, and projects,” said Price. “This new plan adds to what we have done in our past efforts to protect people and property.”


The Office of Emergency Management is part of the Department of Public Safety.