The City of Marble Falls has contracted with Planning Consultant Gabe Rojas, Rojas Planning LLC, who will assist the city with the development of a Hazard Mitigation Plan.
Mayor Westerman explained that the plan will offer practical actions that the City of Marble Falls can take to reduce long-term risk to the community from natural hazards and disasters. The planning process will look at everything from flood events to hurricanes, tropical storms, severe storms, tornados, hail, lightning, drought, wildfire, extreme heat, and winter storms.
According to FEMA, “Mitigation is an investment in the community’s future safety and sustainability. Its critical importance includes protecting public safety and preventing loss of life, reduces harm to existing and future development, and aids to prevent damage to a community’s unique economic, cultural and environmental assets.”
The plan includes a CORE Planning Team composed of key City of Marble Falls staff and officials to develop specific mitigation strategies unique to the community. Once the team begins to meet, an online community survey will be conducted to understand top concerns, along with several public hearings. The survey will also be accessible in public facilities such as the Marble Falls Public Library and Marble Falls City Hall.
The CORE Planning Team will review community capabilities, conduct a risk assessment and identify mitigation goals and actions while gaining public input through public hearings. Once the plan is completed, a final public hearing will be held to present the completed plan and receive feedback. The plan will be submitted for FEMA’s final approval. After approval by FEMA, the plan will be presented to the City Council for adoption. Once adopted, the City will be eligible for FEMA funds to help implement the action items within the plan.
Mayor Westermann – “The City Council’s hope is that residents will become engaged, offer feedback about the plan and consider what their households would do in a wildfire, tornado or other emergency situation. This planning and public input process will help guide the city on what mitigated actions to take and how best to prioritize those actions before the next hazard.”\
“This is an opportunity for open and honest dialogue,” Rojas said. “Maybe it’s something that sparks a conversation within a household or within a neighborhood association or business area to work through what their response is to certain hazard events knowing that other actions are being taken by the city and the county.”