PEORIA — A public meeting set for Wednesday in East Peoria is part of a Tri-County effort to update a plan to prepare for disasters such as tornadoes, floods and droughts.
Fourteen jurisdictions throughout Peoria, Tazewell, and Woodford counties are taking part in the planning process: They are Bartonville, Chillicothe, East Peoria, Eureka, Germantown Hills, Hanna City, Morton, Pekin, Peoria, Peoria Heights, Tremont, Washington, Tazewell County and Woodford County, according to a news release from the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission. Peoria County has its own plan.
“It is crucial to ensure that a documented process is in place to ease the damage caused by future natural disasters,” Reema Abi-Akar, planner at the commission and organizer of the planning process, said in a news release.
The document will update the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission’s most recent 2010 Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan.
The goal is to update the plan every five years, "but sometimes the funding structure makes that difficult," Abi-Akar said last week.
In addition to a $48,713 grant from the Illinois Emergency Management Agency, there is a local cost share requirement of $16,275 to update the plan, Abi-Akar said.
A Mitigation Advisory Committee formed to help with the update is composed of representatives from the 14 jurisdictions in addition to area sheriffs, hospitals, schools, and organizations. The committee had its first meeting last October. The committee's meeting Wednesday is intended to go more in depth to inform the public about what is being done to prepare for disasters in the Tri-County, Abi-Akar said.
Officials from American Environmental Corp. in Springfield, which is consulting on the project, will attend Wednesday’s meeting, she said.
Abi-Akar said there will be more meetings in the coming months, and completing the updated plan might take until 2019.
Brad Erickson can be reached at 686-3059 and email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @Bradrickson.