FEMA Bulletin Week of December 9, 2019

Seal of the Department of Homeland Security


December 9, 2019

View as Webpage | Subscribe

In this Edition:

Important Dates & Reminders

Dec 11

Webinar on Comprehensive Preparedness Guide 101 at 5 p.m. ET.

Dec 12

Webinar on  Pre-Disaster Planning guide for Tribal Governments at 3 p.m. ET

Acting FEMA Administrator Visits Puerto Rico to Discuss Recovery Efforts

Last week, Acting Administrator Pete Gaynor met with mayors from five municipalities across the island to address concerns and discuss strategies to move recovery forward.  At the meeting, it was announced that mitigation plans for both the Bayamón and Cataño municipalities had been approved by FEMA.  FEMA-approved mitigation plans are valid for five years and ensure that the municipalities may be eligible for Hazard Mitigation Assistance grant programs.


His visit included a roundtable conversation that focused on accelerating projects like parks and community centers, a priority for FEMA and Puerto Rico’s Central Office for Recovery, Reconstruction and Resilience.


Acting Administrator Gaynor said the opportunity to meet with the mayors is necessary to measure recovery progress. For more information on the Hurricane María recovery, visit the FEMA website.          

PR Gaynor

Cataño, Puerto Rico, December 5, 2019 - Acting FEMA Administrator Pete Gaynor meets officials from the Office of Reconstruction and Sustainability in Cataño.

Tribe Completes FEMA Disaster Recovery Course

Last month, the leaders of the Aroostook Band of Micmacs in Presque Isle, Maine, took a disaster recovery course to learn and practice how their community can recover from floods and ice storms, the primary natural disasters that affect their region.  The course was taught by Dianne Walbrecker, a trainer from FEMA’s Emergency Management Institute, and other subject matter expert trainers.


During the three-day course, tribal members learned how to work together and determine what role their community plays if a disaster strikes. The course focuses on the benefits of planning for recovery before a disaster occurs. It provided the tools and resources for the tribe to start its comprehensive recovery plan that will help their community move forward after a disaster.  The tribe also drafted their first pre-disaster recovery plan applying what they had learned from the training.


This is the first offering of the course Recovery from Disaster: The Local Community Role to a tribe. Each course is adapted to meet the needs of a local community or tribe, customized to different types of disasters that impact that region, and is delivered locally within the community.  FEMA will deliver more of these courses to local and tribal communities.  For more information about the course, send an email to your State Training Officer or FEMA Regional Training Manager.


For information how to prepare tribal governments for recovery efforts from future disasters, go to the Pre-Disaster Recovery Planning Guide for Tribal Governments.


Dianne Walbrecker, EMI course manager, leads an activity with part of the class during the course delivery in Presque Isle, Maine.

FEMA Releases PrepTalk: Let the Community Lead

FEMA released the PrepTalk “Let the Community Lead: Rethinking Command and Control Systems”. In this PrepTalk, Aaron Titus challenges emergency managers to acknowledge the limitations of command and control systems and to rethink how we interact with the community.


Titus is the author of “How to Prepare for Everything” and the president of the Mountain West National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, which spans 12 states in the Pacific Northwest, Mountain West, Dakotas and Alaska. His PrepTalk video, an accompanying American Sign Language video, and additional resources are available on the FEMA Website.


PrepTalks are a partnership between FEMA, the International Association of Emergency Managers, the National Emergency Management Association, the National Homeland Security Consortium, and the Naval Postgraduate School Center for Homeland Defense and Security.

Upcoming Deadlines and Reminders

FEMA Hosts Webinar for Tribal Partners


This week, FEMA will offer a webinar to explain the recently published "Pre-Disaster Planning Guide for Tribal Governments".


The guide encourages tribal governments to develop pre-disaster recovery plans that prepares them to address recovery immediately after a disaster strikes. It provides a range of planning activities, from basic activities to formal planning steps, such as establishing recovery leadership, engaging the community, identifying existing resources, and building new partnerships that could help tribal governments build resilience.

  • Webinar: 3 p.m. ET, Dec. 12
    Register at: FEMA Adobe Connect
    Call-in: 1-877-446-3914, PIN: 535-888

FEMA Seeks Input on Comprehensive Preparedness Guide 101


FEMA is accepting input for the update of “Comprehensive Preparedness Guide 101: Developing and Maintaining Emergency Operations Plans.”  This document provides guidance for developing emergency operations plans.


FEMA will host a series of 60-minute virtual listening sessions to provide a brief background on the guide, as well as to gather thoughts and recommendations on how to improve it.


Webinars will be held on four dates in December:




The comment period will end Jan. 14, 2020. To review the document and learn more about the virtual listening sessions, please visit the FEMA website.

FEMA Podcast Episode 56: FEMA's Commitment to People With Disabilities and Older Adults

On this episode of the FEMA podcast, listen to a discussion with Linda Mastandrea, director of FEMA’s Office of Disability Integration, and Chris Smith from FEMA’s Office of Response & Recovery.  Learn more about how the agency has shifted its approach to serving the disability community since the 2017 disaster season, why that shift was undertaken, and how things have changed since.


The FEMA podcast is an audio program series available to anyone interested in learning more about the agency, hearing about innovation in the field of emergency management, and listening to stories about communities and individuals recovering after disasters.