County declares state of emergency

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By Ted Pennekamp

 

The Crawford County Finance Committee, during its meeting on March 18, declared a state of emergency due to the COVID-19 threat.

Crawford County Emergency Management Director Jim Hackett said the state of emergency declaration allows for special powers to be put it place.

“The state of emergency allows us to request state and federal resources should we need it, including funding if approved at the state and federal level,” said Hackett.

Hackett also noted a state of emergency allows for advanced spending without county board approval. In addition, it gives County Board Chairman Tom Cornford the ability to approve emergency spending on behalf of the county board.

The state of emergency gives special powers to the Emergency Management Office to set up an Incident Command System (ICS) and have the power to enforce it. The ICS is a management system designed to enable effective and efficient domestic incident management by integrating a combination of facilities, equipment, personnel, procedures, and communications operating within a common organizational structure.

ICS was initially developed to address problems of inter-agency responses to wildfires in California and Arizona but is now a component of the National Incident Management System in the United States, where it has evolved into use in All-Hazards situations, ranging from active shootings to HazMat scenes. In addition, ICS has acted as a pattern for similar approaches internationally.

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