FEMA Mitigation Best Practices: Richland County's Onsite Mobile Permitting Initiative: It's Never Too Late to Mitigate!   [open pdf - 473KB]

This document is part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Best Practices Portfolio. "The FEMA Best Practices Portfolio consists of mitigation stories submitted by individuals and communities that describe measures they have taken to reduce the loss of life and property from disasters. These Best Practices are meant to provide ideas and concepts about reducing losses and to encourage others to evaluate their own risk and consider mitigation as a long-term solution to reducing that risk." This Best Practice Story is about flood mitigation efforts in Richland County, South Carolina. "On an ordinary day, Brittany Hutcherson can be found in the comfort of an air-conditioned office, sitting in front of her computer, providing guidance on safe building practices and obtaining building permits; but on this day the Richland County Permits Supervisor is seated in a metal folding chair, behind a makeshift counter, in the front yard of a storm-ravaged home. With her feet planted in soil still damp from the remnants of October 2015's historic flood, Hutcherson is focused on helping homeowners on the road to recovery. [...] Hutcherson was asked by Richland County Housing Official, Kecia Lara, to assist with the onsite mobile permitting operation. With prior training and experience in customer service, her priority was to tend to the needs of property owners in the process of rebuilding their homes and lives from the devastation. This initiative was particularly imperative because many of the area's homeowners are elderly and have transportation challenges, which prevented them from visiting the permitting office in person to get the help they needed."

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