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Offered January 9, 2019
Prefiled January 6, 2019
Designating the first full week of September, in 2019 and in each succeeding year, as Resiliency Week in Virginia.
Patrons-- Sturtevant; Delegate: Peace
Referred to Committee on Rules

WHEREAS, hazard mitigation is the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters and is most effective when implemented under a comprehensive, long-term mitigation plan; and

WHEREAS, the Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant Program, administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), is designed to assist states and local communities in implementing a sustained pre-disaster natural hazard mitigation program; and

WHEREAS, the Disaster Recovery Reform Act makes available additional funds for states and communities to undertake pre-disaster mitigation measures and creates new incentives for states to build resiliently; and

WHEREAS, since 1908, natural disasters have cost the United States more than $1 trillion, with disasters affecting local and state economies through lost payrolls, lost sales and income tax, and long recovery periods; and

WHEREAS, 25 percent of small businesses that are impacted by a natural disaster never reopen their doors; and

WHEREAS, mitigation planning is a key process used to break the cycle of disaster damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage; and

WHEREAS, according to a FEMA-commissioned study conducted by the National Institute of Building Sciences, every $1 spent on hazard mitigation provides the nation with $6 in future benefits; and

WHEREAS, effective pre-disaster mitigation reduces the demand for relief services on volunteer organizations such as disaster rescue and recovery teams, along with food banks and homeless shelters that serve their communities by changing their operations to provide additional services to those affected by disaster; and

WHEREAS, Resiliency Week provides an opportunity to honor the brave men and women who, as first responders, selflessly provide aid in a disaster to safeguard Virginia citizens and to raise public awareness about the continuing need to plan for future disasters by instituting a pre-disaster mitigation strategy; and

WHEREAS, communities throughout the Commonwealth are encouraged to observe Resiliency Week by planning for natural disasters and developing long-range mitigation strategies for protecting people and property from future hazard events; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the Senate, the House of Delegates concurring, That the General Assembly designate the first full week of September, in 2019 and in each succeeding year, as Resiliency Week in Virginia; and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the Clerk of the Senate transmit a copy of this resolution to the Virginia Department of Emergency Management so that the agency may be apprised of the sense of the General Assembly of Virginia in this matter; and, be it

RESOLVED FINALLY, That the Clerk of the Senate post the designation of this week on the General Assembly's website.