The Hampton Roads All Hazards Advisory Committee (AHAC) held its first meeting March 24, 2015. The meeting marked the culmination of a two year process to consolidate regional emergency management planning activities.
The AHAC assumes the missions of the Regional Emergency Management Technical Advisory Committee, the Hampton Roads Urban Area Working Group, the Hampton Roads Regional Catastrophic Planning Team, the Hampton Roads Metropolitan Medical Response System Oversight Committee, and the Hampton Roads Interoperable Communications Advisory Committee. AHAC’s purpose is to reduce duplication of efforts, enhance collaboration, and establish a governance structure with the necessary flexibility to enhance disaster prevention, preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation in the Hampton Roads region.
The creation of AHAC began back in 2013 when a report by the Hampton Roads Regional Catastrophic Preparedness Team concluded the region was at a crossroads with how to proceed with sustainment of regional emergency management planning. In its Regional Sustainment Framework, the Team cited that “the multitude of planning initiatives and grant programs that have been undertaken in the region have resulted in the unintentional side effect of creating an unwieldy number of planning organizations and working groups.” Many of these organizations shared parallel missions, schedules, and agendas creating the unintended consequence of duplicating time and effort spent on critical emergency management issues facing the region. The Team concluded that as a result of a reduction in federal funding and the need for broader responsibilities for sustaining existing efforts, the region was primed to streamline and consolidate its emergency management planning activities.
The Hampton Roads Urban Area Working Group (UAWG) established a subcommittee that began a year long process to develop a charter for a consolidated regional organization for Hampton Roads’ emergency management planning activities. In October 2014, the HRPDC approved the charter for the AHAC.
John Sadler, Emergency Management Administrator, will be the HRPDC staff support to the AHAC.