Each jurisdiction’s elected and appointed authorities ensure that all necessary and suitable measures are taken to safeguard people and property. Citizens expect their chosen representatives and leaders to act immediately to help them fix a crisis when they are endangered. Because of this expectation, citizens anticipate the government to mobilize all available resources, including those of non-profit organizations and the business sector, and, if required, seek outside aid (Sledge & Thomas, 2019). To safeguard themselves, their loved ones, their organizations, and their property against harm, residents and community members must all play a part. Resilient communities are the result of community-based planning.
Federal Plans and State EOPs
Each level of government’s approach to emergency operations is described in detail in federal and state Emergency Operations Plans (EOPs). To support local emergency operations, all of these tiers of government have comparable and intertwined tasks. Vertical coordination of plans is involved in all aspects of government to provide a single operational emphasis. Integrating and synchronizing processes between the federal and state government is the goal. Two of the most significant principles in a national planning organization, integration and synchronization, play separate but equally essential functions in linking federal and state EOPs (Telfair LeBlanc et al., 2019). This helps address how federal departments and agencies provide resources to state and local processes from a federal perspective through integrated planning. Coordinating with other groups and finding resources are essential concerns for governments and integrated planning answers these concerns.
Regardless of the cause, scope, or magnitude of an event, National Incident Management System (NIMS) provides a uniform structure for its management. NIMS serves as a common framework for incident management throughout the nation’s first responders and authorities. The NIMS Incident Command System (ICS) handles all domestic occurrences. In all-hazards incident response, the National Response Framework (NRF) serves as a road map for the US. The NRF mandates that every federal department or division plan for its role in responding to a crisis. A wide range of federal departments and agencies are well-equipped to deal with emergencies (Wolf-Fordham, 2020). Hazardous materials remediation falls under the jurisdiction of various government authorities and departments. For example, other people may play supporting roles, such as providing communications human resources and equipment. Regardless of their specific responsibilities, all federal organizations should adopt strategies, plans, and processes that outline how they will efficiently find and distribute resources as a component of a joint federal rejoinder. The planning concerns for reaction can also inform planning for deterrence and protection.
State, Territorial, and Tribal Government Planning
It is important to note that the National Guard is part of the state and territory administrations, local police departments, medical groups, transportation organizations, and special teams. As outlined by the NRF, a state government should assist local efforts prior, during, and following a catastrophe or emergency. A state has a reasonable expectation that its needs will outstrip its resources (Nowell & Steelman, 2019). The Governor may call for help from the federal administration or other states via mutual aid agreements (such as the Emergency Management Assistance Compact).
Planning for Local Government
The NRF emphasizes the idea of resiliency in neighborhoods. Individual preparedness and the guidance and involvement of local government, policymakers, and private sector firms and organizations are essential to a community’s ability to recover from disasters. A threat or hazard is frequently reported to local law enforcement, fire departments, EMS, disaster response, public health, health personnel, public works, and other government agencies (Kapucu & Hu, 2022). These organizations should work closely with individuals, communities, and care providers to help them better understand the risks and hazards that they face and build emergency plans for their homes, which should include their pets and service animals.
When it comes to its operational strategy, the NRF serves as a guide for governments of all levels, businesses, non-governmental entities, and individuals. In a disaster, aspects of the NRF can be applied in a flexible and scalable manner. The NRF uses 15 Emergency Support Functions (ESFs) to characterize federal resources and support that states and localities can use to aid in responding to natural disasters. The coordinator of each ESF is a federal entity or organization. The coordinating agency establishes and organizes a team that works with state and local authorities to identify unfulfilled resource needs during preparedness and response activities (Nowell & Steelman, 2019). The federal government’s resources and help are also coordinated through the group.
Federal Plans at Regional and National Levels
NRF plans help implement federal response operations at the local, state, and national levels. The NRF is supported by the Federal coordinating structure at the national level. Regional units of federal agencies are preparing strategies to help state and local operations in disaster response. They also serve as a bridge between the state EOP and the NRF. Federal agencies and units and their state equivalents in each region are described in connection to one another in each regional plan. States can also learn about the federal government’s varied response processes, skills, and resources (Berman, 2020). Federal disaster response efforts, including Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and its programs, are governed under the Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (Stafford Act).
State, Territorial, and Tribal EOPs
State/territorial/tribal EOPs address several functional correlations and explain how they may best achieve their objective of meeting unmet demands. In the early phase of response activities, the state/territorial/tribal authority must perform steps such as command and control, caution, public notice, and evacuation that do not come under the Federal response mission. As a result, federal response plans should exclude them. Because of the NRF, certain states, territories, and tribes have chosen to mimic the NRF’s activities to receive federal aid. Exactly copying the Federal ESFs is unnecessary. State/territorial/tribal ESF counterparts have been given additional tasks relevant to the state/territorial/tribal level. Others have employed a hybrid system that includes federal and state/territorial/tribal ESF counterparts. What matters most is the government’s notion of operations, regulations, government system, and resource base when selecting functions (Nowell & Steelman, 2019). Because the EOP lays out precisely what the state/territorial/tribal administration would do in an emergency, the two documents should be compatible.
Local EOPs should generally follow state, territorial, and tribal plans. They outline numerous operational response functions to accomplish the objective of delivering resources to satisfy unmet demands. Many responsibilities fall under the purview of local government during the early phase of response activities but are not explicitly assigned to the state or territorial government. Examples include command and control, alarm, public notice, and evacuation (Berman, 2020). Working with state, territorial, or tribal authorities is essential for defining local jurisdictions’ roles, duties, and structures. The EOP outlines the steps that the local administration will take in an emergency.
Incorporating Federal, State, and Local EOPs
A thorough look at the planning linkages reveals that the FEMA Region is the nexus of federal and territorial arrangement. The FEMA Region serves as a transition point between state and federal agencies in the event of a disaster and the establishment of a Joint Field Office in the impacted state. The FEMA Region synchronizes and integrates federal and state, territorial, tribal, and local planning for disaster response and recovery operations (Kapucu & Hu, 2022). When developing a plan of action, jurisdictional considerations are taken into account. In the same way, FEMA Regions use gap analysis to identify capacity gaps, resource deficiencies, and state requirements for Federal aid. As part of a combined planning team with numerous state representatives, FEMA regions perform these studies, or they may conduct them independently with each state.
FEMA’s principal function is to coordinate the responses to a disaster in the US, which strains the capacities of local and state governments. It is part of the Department of Homeland Security. It is authorized under the Stafford Act, which mandates that the President set up a disaster preparedness program that involves the coordination of all applicable federal, state, and local plans, as well as post-disaster evaluations and drafting of disaster preparedness plans. An additional appendix to each region’s program provides a summary of each state’s operational concept and priorities, as well as their demands (Nowell & Steelman, 2019). FEMA Regions and all federal, state, and local allies work together effectively during emergency operations because of the strong ties. Because of these collaborations, more precise definitions of roles and duties have been achieved, leading to more efficient operations at all levels.
It is the responsibility of each jurisdiction’s elected and appointed officials to ensure that people and property are protected. A community-based approach to planning yields more resilient neighborhoods. Federal and state emergency operations plans describe in detail how each level of government approaches EOPs. The NRF recommends that a state government aid local efforts before, during, and after a disaster or emergency.
Because of their close ties, the FEMA Regions and all of their federal, state, and local allies work together efficiently during emergencies.
Berman, E. (2020). The roles of the state and federal governments in a pandemic. Journal of National Security Law & Policy, 11, 61-73.
Kapucu, N., & Hu, Q. (2022). An old puzzle and unprecedented challenges: Coordination in response to the COVID-19 pandemic in the US. Public Performance & Management Review, 1, 1-26.
Nowell, B., & Steelman, T. (2019). Beyond ICS: How should we govern complex disasters in the United States? Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, 16(2), 1-10.
Sledge, D., & Thomas, H. F. (2019). From disaster response to community recovery: Nongovernmental entities, government, and public health. American Journal of Public Health, 109(3), 437-444.
Telfair LeBlanc, T., Kosmos, C., & Avchen, R. N. (2019). Collaboration is key to community preparedness. American Journal of Public Health, 109(4), 252-260.
Wolf-Fordham, S. (2020). Integrating government silos: Local emergency management and public health department collaboration for emergency planning and response. The American Review of Public Administration, 50(7), 560-567.