The Sullivan County Commisioners have formally established an emergency management agency. Click to hear KMZU’s Kristie Cross talk to Director Dennis Goldsmith:
According to the director, he was already serving in that role prior to this latest development. “The commissioners sought me out, I believe, because of my experience,” said Goldsmith,” I am a retired Marine Corps Colonel with 32 years of experience and I worked with FEMA as a disaster assistance employee for seven years.”
The goal of the agency is to establish a coordinated plan of action for those in the area. “I would say our residents our prepared, there’s just not a comprehensive plan in place,”said Goldsmith,”It’s mostly rural area. People tend to be able to take care of themselves and they prepare for that, but we need a plan so that we can respond to a larger disaster if necessary.”
At this time, the agency does not have funding and is run by volunteers. Steps are being taken, however, in aneffort to secure state dollars to aid in their work.
Agency staff will be meeting with local officials, school districts, business owners, and other community leaders to gather input on the development of the plan.
The Sullivan Commissioners, during their second scheduled meeting of 2013, formally established an Emergency Mangement Agency to support the county during a disaster or an emergency.
The mangement organization will be known as the Sullivan County Emergency Managment Agency and will be responsible for the preparation and implementaion of emergency functions in accordance with Chapter 44, Revised Statutes of Missouri and the Missouri Emergency Operations Plan.
Presiding Commissioner, Chris May, said,” The various ciommunities in our county are protected by small groups of first responders. This team will provide the coordinatino of the first responders who protect our whole county.”
This agency shall consist of a Director, a Deputy Director, and other members as deemed necessary by the Director, appointed by the Presiding Commissioner, with a majority consent of the County Commissioners, and shall serve during the pleasure of the County Commissioners.
Western District Commissioner Danny Busick, commented,” A qualified person to head this agency is required. We will ensure the citizens of our county have a good person qualified to develop and manage our emergency plans.”
The organization shall perform emergency managment functions within the territorial limits of Sullivan County, and may conduct these functions outside the territorial limits as directed by the Governor during the time of emergency.
Eastern District Commissioner, John Watt, said,” We live in tornado alley. We need a tean experienced in emergency and disaster management to make sure we can adequately respond to a Joplin-like event.”
The staff of the Sullivan County Emergency Management Agency will begin meeting with elected officials, school officials, business owners, and other ocmmunity leaders to ensure emergency plans are appropraite, comprehensive, and kept up-to-date.
A complete copy of the Resolution establishing this agency is part of the public record and is available at the office of the county clerk.