What is Hazard Mitigation?

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), hazard mitigation is “the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters. It is most effective when implemented under a comprehensive, long-term mitigation plan. State, tribal, and local governments engage in hazard mitigation planning to identify risks and vulnerabilities associated with natural disasters and develop long-term strategies for protecting people and property from future hazard events.” Typically, natural hazard mitigation describes actions that reduce or eliminate the impact of natural hazards. Wildfires, floods, thunderstorms, high winds, winter storms, and drought are all examples of natural hazards. Actions to reduce the impact of natural hazards fall into four main categories: education and awareness programs; local plans and regulations; natural system protection; and structure and infrastructure projects. Examples of mitigation actions are implementing defensible space around structures, hazardous fuels thinning, drainage improvements, watershed stabilization, and public education campaigns.

Hardin-Pope Counties Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Planning

Research for the Hardin-Pope Counties Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan is underway!

The natural hazard mitigation planning process assists Hardin County, Pope County and the five incorporated jurisdictions to identify the natural hazards that impact each community, analyze the risks, and prioritize actions that can be taken to reduce that risk. Examples of natural hazard mitigation projects are tornado safe rooms, drainage improvements, utility tie-downs, and public outreach. A Committee, made up of representatives from the counties and the incorporated jurisdictions, meets bi-monthly to discuss and develop the Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan. In June 2024, informational kiosks providing the status of the planning process will be posted in the county libraries and at the Golden Circle Senior Centers. Community members are invited to provide feedback and input during an Open House planned for July 2024, after the Committee prepares the draft plan. After the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and the Federal Emergency Management Agency provide approval of the final draft, each governing body will hold a public hearing for final adoption. Having the approved hazard mitigation plan provides each jurisdiction with a federal government approved and locally adopted plan which will support grant applications to implement natural hazard risk reduction projects. The approved plan is a requirement for FEMA hazard mitigation grant funding and can serve as the planning eligibility requirement for other federal grants like U.S. Forest Service Community Wildlife Defense Grant.



July 11, 2024

The Hardin-Pope Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan Draft is now available to view!

The Draft, along with the Open House Flyer/Presentation, the Press Release, and the Overview of the Mitigation Plan Video can be accessed by clicking the links below!

Open House Flyer
Press Release
Hardin-Pope Counties Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan Draft
Open House Presentation Slides
Overview of the Mitigation Plan Video


Please don’t forget to complete the Community Feedback Survey – Hardin and Pope Counties Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan!

Feedback Form Purpose

In order for the Committee to understand and incorporate community feedback into the Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan, please provide your answers to the questions below. The last question on the survey provides an opportunity to provide additional feedback on any topic related to the Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan. Your feedback will be vetted by the Committee and incorporated into the document. The final version of the Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan will be presented for approval to the governing bodies of all jurisdictions (anticipated for early 2025).

Feedback Surveys will be accepted from July 11 through July 25, 2024. Completed hard copy surveys can be submitted at the County library kiosks for the Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan.

If you have any questions, please contact Alene Carr, Southeastern Illinois Regional Planning and Development Commission (SIRPDC) Executive Director, at acarr@sirpdc.org or 618-252-7463.

Survey Link:
Community Feedback Survey – Hardin and Pope Counties Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan


Committee Meeting Minutes are still available – click the links below to view!

Committee Meeting Minutes


Contact Information

Alene Carr
Executive Director

Jessica Chaney
Regional Planner


Additional Information