Chuck Kemker, Rush County EMA director, recently accepted an award for Rush County being the Most Improved Agency from the Indiana Department of Homeland Security (IDHS) at the Emergency Management Alliance of Indiana (EMAI) in Indianapolis.
“Congratulations for the hard work by Rush County for this state-wide achievement,” said IDHS Executive Director Joe Wainscott. “This was no small accomplishment, and Rush County should be proud of its advancements to further protect the Indiana’s economy and the lives of Hoosiers.”
This award was based on the Indiana Department of Homeland Security’s (IDHS) district/county assessment scores, which include a review of administration, operations, and resources with the assessment period running from July to June each year.
Kemker was appointed as EMA director in August, 2011. He brought considerable experience and expertise to the agency with 28 years on the Rushville Fire Department where he holds the current rank of Captain and is an Emergency Medical Technician, Hazardous Materials Technician, Fire/Arson Investigator and Instructor II/III. He is also the chairman of the Rush County Local Emergency Planning Committee and coordinates the Rush County CERT team. This is all in addition to his duties as EMA director.
The 2011 Emergency Management Capability Assessment continued the process and evaluation practices started in 2008 by looking at fundamental capabilities of local emergency management programs within the State of Indiana. The process offered an opportunity for the state and local jurisdictions to consider additional priorities and mission essential tasks, all taken directly from the Target Capabilities List.
The Target Capabilities List is a component of the National Preparedness Goal from Homeland Security Presidential Directive, which describes and sets targets for the capabilities required to achieve the four homeland security mission areas: Prevent, Protect, Respond and Recover. It defines and provides the basis for assessing preparedness. It also establishes national targets for the capabilities to prepare the Nation for major all-hazards events, such as those defined by the National Planning Scenarios.
The current version of the Target Capabilities List contains 37 core capabilities.
The following are selected as the key initiatives for the state of Indiana to support a strong and successful Emergency Management Program in the local jurisdictions: Professional Contributions, Emergency Planning and Grants Management, Regional Collaboration, Communications and EOC Management, Continuous/On-going Administrative and Programmatic Functions and logistics, and Crisis Communication and Public Engagement.
In order to be properly prevent, protect, respond and recover in the event of an emergency or disaster, there is an incredible amount of preparation that must take place.
To qualify for FEMA assistance, in addition to making sure an approved emergency plan is in place with all its required policies and procedures, coordinating and training with other agencies and volunteers, and ensuring proper equipment is available, there is also the need to understand what is required by FEMA in the way of documentation.
To not be prepared could mean a loss of funds and is much more difficult to do after the fact.
- Rushville Republican