Hazard Mitigation

In emergency management, hazards are natural, human-caused, or technological disasters. Hazard mitigation means reducing, eliminating, redirecting, or avoiding the effects of those hazards.  The standard definition of hazard mitigation that is often used by FEMA and PEMA is any cost-effective action taken to eliminate or reduce the long-term risk to life and property from natural and technological hazards. The phrase “cost-effective” is added to this definition to stress the important practical idea that, to be beneficial, a mitigation measure should save money in the long run. If the cost of a mitigation project is less than the long-term costs of disaster recovery and repair for the project area, the mitigation is considered cost-effective.


Hazard mitigation is any sustained action taken to reduce or eliminate long-term risk to life, property, and the environment resulting from natural and human-made hazards. The Butler County Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP) was developed to identify the vulnerabilities and risks associated with hazards and to define a mitigation strategy to reduce these vulnerabilities.  Once approved by Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), communities that adopt the 2021 Butler County Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP) will be eligible for FEMA disaster grants. Communities that achieve a CRS status in the future may also be able to gain points for decreased insurance costs. This HMP could improve a community’s bond rating when considering future conditions.

All Hazards Mitigation Planning Process and Why A Municipality Must Have a Plan:

Hazard mitigation planning is an extension of that effort that aims at identifying hazards and risks in our communities and developing ways and means of reducing potentially disastrous losses of life and property.  Hazard mitigation planning is now more important than ever for communities interested in getting federal funds for mitigation projects. Every mitigation grant program sponsored by FEMA now requires applicants to have a federally-approved hazard mitigation plan (HMP) to be eligible for project funding. That means that even if your community is included in a federally-declared disaster, you won't be eligible for a buyout program (for example) unless you already have a FEMA-approved HMP.



How Can A Butler County Municipality Create an All Hazards Plan?

Municipalities within Butler County can either create their own All Hazards Mitigation Plan by following the FEMA Planning Guidance by clicking here OR the municipality can adopt the County's Hazard Mitigation Plan by adopting a Resolution.  Click here for the Resolution Form and an Example of a completed Resolution for reference.

To view the 2021 Butler County All Hazards Mitigation Plan, click on the icon below.

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  1. Why Does My Muncipality Have to Have An All Hazards Mitigation Plan
  2. What Grant Programs Are Available
  3. PEMA State Hazard Mitigation Guidance

Regulations and Guidance

The Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 amended the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (Stafford Act), creating the framework for state, local, tribal and territorial governments to engage in hazard mitigation planning to receive certain types of non-emergency disaster assistance. Requirements and procedures to implement hazard mitigation planning provisions may be found in the Code of Federal Regulations, Stafford Act Title 44, Chapter 1, Part 201 (44 CFR Part 201).

Since the Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 amended the Stafford Act, additional laws have been passed that help to shape hazard mitigation policy. These revisions are included in the Sandy Recovery Improvement Act (SRIA) of 2013, the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968, and the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) Act of 2016. 

For more information from FEMA click here