September 20, 2012
an effort by the Louisiana Association of Planning & Development Districts to broaden partnerships and advance the lines of communication with regard to resiliency and emergency management perspectives…generally culminated in an annual event entitled “PARTNERS IN RESILIENCY”
LAPDD is currently planning a PARTNER forum for late 2013.
LAPDD conducted a “PEER EXCHANGE” on September 20, 2012 with assistance under the Transportation Planning Capacity Building Program of the Federal Highway Administration, Federal Transit Administration and the Volpe Center (Volpe National Transportation Systems Center), in order to advance understanding and discussion on different approaches to evacuation and resiliency planning that may be applicable to Louisiana’s disaster response and recovery practices. This allowed LAPDD to bring national speakers, possessing very specific knowledge as facilitators and subject-matter experts, to focus the forum on evacuation, considerations of special populations, and regional impact. Discussion centered on transportation planning, resource utilization for disasters, and the importance of spreading awareness of different stakeholders roles as an opportunity for future collaboration.
KEY TOPICS included 1) delineation of roles and responsibilities of metropolitan planning organizations and Planning districts before-during-and-after-disaster; 2) identification of resources (information, planning, financial, administrative, technical) that address evacuation and other long-term transportation-related recovery or resiliency issues; 3) best practices and lessons learned in resiliency and evacuations with concentrated regard for communication tools, supply chain transportation route coordination, public/private agency support, and mitigating/managing traffic congestion during/following a disaster; and 4) examples of partnerships to further develop the foundation for a regional emergency transportation network.
SELECTED SPEAKERS addressed: regionalism, resiliency planning with special populations and mobility needs, and expertise in intrastate mutual aid systems (IMAS). Visiting Peer Speakers were:Doug Elliott – East Central Iowa Council of Governments (ECICOG);Michael Pompili – Columbus, Ohio Department of Public Health (retired);Richard Talbert – South Walton Fire District; International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC). Local Peers were: J.D. Allen – Alliance Transportation Group, Inc.; Kevin Belanger – South Central Planning and Development Commission;Grant Bush – Imperial Calcasieu Regional Planning and Development District. Keynote Speaker: Rick Boudreaux – Port Allen Fire District; IAFC; Louisiana Intrastate Mutual Aid System Committee. Approximately 50 people participated.
Partners in Resiliency was a one-day Resiliency Conference offered by invitation only to approximately 50 different representatives of associations, commissions, and State and Federal agencies with a presence in Louisiana. LAPDD convened the forum as an opportunity for leaders to forge working relationships across geography, disciplines, and formal systems … just to talk. This followed more than a year of outreach between various local, regional, state, federal and non-profit entities, whose key staff and leaders were frustrated by a lack of opportunity, awareness, information, or other obstacle to connect with other Louisiana professionals vested in the resiliency of our State.
The format included small groups and “Partner Networking Moment” opportunities, to encourage partnerships and communication links, between and amongst persons engaged in or touched by some phase of response, mitigation, preparedness or recovery. Key questions included:
The event and underlying activities were conducted by the Louisiana Association of Planning and Development Districts, individually and through its association, with funding support by the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration (EDA), through the Austin Regional Office under Award Number 08-06-04330, to the Louisiana Association of Planning & Development Districts for Economic Adjustment following Hurricanes Gustav and Ike.