2016 Cochise County Multi-jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan Update

Welcome to the project webpage for the 2016 Cochise County Multi-jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan Update.  Please check back often for project updates and postings.  This webpage will be discontinued after the project is completed.

What is Hazard Mitigation?

The term "Hazard Mitigation" describes actions that can help reduce or eliminate long-term risks caused by hazards, or disaster, such as floods, hurricanes, wildfires, landslides, tornadoes, earthquakes, dam failures, or terrorism.   As the costs of disasters continue to rise, governments and ordinary citizens must find ways to reduce hazard risks to our communities and ourselves. Efforts made to reduce hazard risks are easily made compatible with other community goals; safer communities are more attractive to employers as well as residents.  As communities plan for new development and improvements to existing infrastructure, mitigation can and should be an important component of the planning effort.

While mitigation activities can and should be taken before a disaster event has the chance to occur, after disasters hazard mitigation is essential.  Oftentimes after disasters, repairs and reconstruction are often completed in such a way as to simply restore damaged property to pre-disaster conditions. These efforts may “get things back to normal”, but the replication of pre-disaster conditions often results in a repetitive cycle of damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage. Hazard mitigation breaks this repetitive cycle by producing less vulnerable conditions through post-disaster repairs and reconstruction. The implementation of such hazard mitigation actions now by state and local governments means building stronger, safer and smarter communities that will be able to reduce future injuries and future damage.

About the Project

Cochise County created its previous Mitigation Plan in accordance with the requirements of the Federal Stafford Act, the National Flood Insurance Act, and 44 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). The last plan was approved by FEMA in 2012, and was adopted by the County Board of Supervisors and municipalities within Cochise County.  These plans must be updated and approved by FEMA every five years. 

Cochise County and its participating jurisdictions, agencies, and organizations are now in the process of updating the County's Hazard Mitigation Plan and expect to have it approved by FEMA by early 2017.  

Cochise County will benefit from this project by:

  • Ensuring eligibility for all sources of hazard mitigation funds made available through FEMA. 

  • Increasing public awareness and understanding of vulnerabilities as well as support for specific actions to reduce losses from future natural disaster.

  • Ensuring community policies, programs, and goals are compatible with reducing vulnerability to all hazards and identifying those that are incompatible.

  • Building partnerships with diverse stakeholders increasing opportunities to leverage data and resources in reducing workloads as well as achieving shared community objectives.

  • Expanding the understanding of potential risk reduction measures to include: local plans and regulations; structure and infrastructure projects; natural systems protection; education and awareness programs; and other tools. 

  • Informing the development, prioritization, and implementation of mitigation projects. Benefits accrue over the life of the project as losses are avoided from each subsequent hazard event.


Project Outreach and Communications

The Cochise County Office of Emergency Services is leading this project for the County and wants to ensure that all community stakeholders and citizens have an opportunity to be involved in this planning process. All project information and messaging will be posted utilizing this website and updates will also be communicated via the Cochise County Emergency Services website.


Project Schedule

The proposed project schedule is posted below. Please check back as future meeting, outreach, and project deliverable dates are confirmed.

June 1, 2016: Project Kick-off Meeting with Large Planning Team

June - October 2016: Risk and Vulnerability Assessment

September 19, 2016: Planning Team Conference Call

November 2016: Planning Team Conference Call/Review

December 2016: Planning Team Hazard Mitigation Project Workshop

April 2017: Draft Plan Posted for Public Comment/Review


Planning meeting information can be found in the links provided below.

Large Planning Team Meeting 1 Agenda & Presentation

                Kick-Off Meeting Agenda
                Kick-Off Meeting Presentation

Large Planning Team Meeting 2 Agenda & Presentation

              Mitigation Strategy Meeting Agenda 
              Mitigation Strategy Meeting Presentation


Plan Documents

Draft sections of the Hazard Mitigation Plan and other related items will be posted here for public review and comment as they become available.

                2017 Final Draft Plan


Surveys will be utilized throughout the planning process to engage both the Hazard Mitigation Planning Team and the general public. Links to these surveys will be posted below as they become available.

Public Risk Perceptions Survey - This survey is now closed and the results will be incorporated into the draft plan document.

Public Mitigation Strategy Survey - This survey is  now closed and the results will be incorporated into the draft plan document.

Reference Documents

Below is a collection of hazard mitigation planning resources in addition to the County and State’s current hazard mitigation plan.

2013 State of Arizona Hazard Mitigation Plan

Cochise County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan 2012

FEMA Hazard Mitigation Planning Resources

FEMA Local Mitigation Planning Handbook

FEMA Mitigation Best Practices Portfolio

FEMA Mitigation Ideas


Cochise County Emergency Services Department

Cochise County Floodplain Division