Hazard mitigation is defined as any action taken to reduce or alleviate the loss of life, personal injury, and property damage that can result from a disaster. It involves long- and short-term actions often implemented before disasters, but also during and after. Hazard mitigation activities can include planning efforts, policy changes, programs, studies, improvement projects, and other steps to reduce the impacts of hazards.
The federal Disaster Management Act of 2000 requires state and local governments to develop, and regularly update, hazard mitigation plans (HMPs) as a condition for federal disaster grant assistance. Plans are required to be updated every five years.
In 2006, the Board adopted the first Sonoma County Hazard Mitigation Plan. Permit Sonoma's Comprehensive Planning Section and Fire Prevention Division have worked together to prepare the mandatory 5-year updates. The 2016 Sonoma County Hazard Mitigation Plan Update was adopted on April 25, 2017.
In 2019, Permit Sonoma applied for and received funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Hazard Mitigation Grant Program to prepare the required update to the 2016 Sonoma County Hazard Mitigation Plan.
The 2021 MJHMP effort began in June 2020 and was led by Permit Sonoma, with support from the Department of Emergency Management, and in partnership with each participating jurisdiction.