Safety Element Update and Hazard Mitigation Plan

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The City of Hercules is updating the Safety Element of the General Plan, and simultaneously authoring a new Hazard Mitigation Plan.  

The General Plan Safety Element content is dictated by the State Office of Planning and Research, and may include natural and man-made topics. The content will include goals, policies, and implementing actions. Prior to sending it to the State Office of Planning and Research, the City Council will approve the content by resolution.

The Hazard Mitigation Plan purpose is governed by the Stafford Act, as amended by the Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000. The Plan shall reduce the loss of life and property, human suffering, and economic disruption, and provide disaster assistance costs resulting from natural disasters. The Hazard Mitigation Plan is a precondition for the city receiving FEMA mitigation project grants. Working with Cal OES as a partner, FEMA must approve the content prior to City Council approval. More information on State Hazard Mitigation Planning

Timeline for preparation and approval:

  • Summer 2019 – Staff Preparation
  • Fall 2019 – Community Workshop #1 (Sept. 25, 2019) and Survey
  • Winter 2019/2020 – Draft Plan and Staff Review
  • Spring 2020 – Community Workshop #2 (TBD)
  • Summer 2020 – Cal OES approval, CEQA, and City Council adoption

Community Survey

The City conducted a community survey to gauge the public’s understanding of citywide hazards, identify ways the City might educate the public on hazards, and guide the development of hazard policies and programs. The survey was opened October 1, 2019, and closed November 4, 2019. during which 62 responses were received. The results will be used to identify opportunities for community partners and the City of Hercules.  

Survey Results Summary

  • Over 60% of the respondents have experienced either an earthquake or severe weather in Hercules.
  • People are not concerned with natural hazards such as dam or levee failure or flood, but are concerned with natural hazards such as earthquake, wildfire, drought and severe weather.
  • Non-natural hazards of greatest concern are: oil/gas spills; utility/power failure; hazardous materials spills; and active shooters.
  • In the event of an immediate threat, people expect to be notified by Contra Costa County Emergency Warning System, television, or radio.
  • People have taken preparedness steps, but few people have registered for emergency alerts. 
  • Almost 30% of the respondents are not prepared for going without electricity or natural gas for up to five days.
  • Almost 50% of the respondents did not receive a real estate disclosure explanation of the implications of living in a natural hazard risk area. 62% of people are not aware if their home is in a hazard area, and 73% do not have hazard insurance.
  • People tend to use local news, Next Door, and Facebook as their primary source of news and information about Hercules.
  • 76% of respondents feel additional education and programs that promote citizen actions to reduce exposure to risks are needed.

View the full Community Survey Results

 

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If you would like to be notified of future opportunities to comment on the draft Plan or to attend a public hearing, please contact Michele Rodriguez, City of Hercules Planning, at mrodriguez@ci.hercules.ca.us or call 510-799-8242.