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MSEM 6300 Week 3: Intergovernmental Relations

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MSEM 6300 Week 3: Intergovernmental Relations essay assignment

MSEM 6300: Disaster Response and Recovery | Week 3 essay assignment

You are the state emergency manager for a state that rarely, if ever, has snowstorms. Unfortunately, your state just had one and the response was highly criticized. You meet with officials to investigate how the state should prepare for potential and future snowstorm emergencies.

One idea involves the purchasing of snow removal trucks. However, the purchase is cost prohibitive, and routine maintenance and storage present other issues. Moreover, the likelihood of using these trucks is minimal. Justifying the spending of taxpayer dollars for these trucks is problematic.

Another idea recommends modifying existing vehicles, such as trash trucks, to use as snow plows. Furthermore, it might be possible to sign a mutual aid agreement with another state to borrow snow removal equipment.

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One unique aspect of emergency management in the United States is the federal system of governance overseeing multiple jurisdictions (known as federalism). The number of entities responding to an incident grows geometrically as an incident becomes larger and more complex. Intergovernmental relations correspond to the coordination between multiple jurisdictions. Coordination should take place not only across each jurisdiction, but each jurisdiction should also coordinate internally.

This week, you explore the impact of 9/11 on intergovernmental relationships through legislation, policy, and practice. You examine various coordination mechanisms for fostering intergovernmental relationships in emergency management and consider the potential impact of these relationships on executing response and recovery activities.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Analyze the impact of disasters on intergovernmental relationships
  • Analyze challenges to fostering intergovernmental relationships in emergency management

Most disasters change not only the direct environment in which they occurred, but also the policies and sets of standards meant to prevent them. Policy changes, practice considerations, and integration of lessons learned from the all hazards approach to emergency management serve to improve response and recovery activities for future disaster events. However, emergency managers must determine the effect to which lessons learned may or may not influence emergency management practice. In promoting policy changes and practice considerations for the field, the concept of standardizing response and recovery operations is useful.

Although the concept of standardizing emergency management is not new, the events of 9/11 unambiguously demonstrated lags in standards for terrorist prevention and preparedness. Because of the lack of coordination between several government agencies for information dissemination and execution of standard protocols, prevention of the attack failed. Similarly, Hurricane Katrina revealed inconsistencies with fostering intergovernmental relationships for evacuation considerations, safe relocation of victims, and delivery of federal assistance across all government levels. Flawed legislation for mitigation and preparedness presented immense challenges for recovery and response efforts after the storm.

The integration of lessons learned into the all hazards approach for emergency management and the subsequent legislation to address challenges for coordinating response and recovery operations is a recurring theme in the field of emergency management.

For this Discussion, review the media and Learning Resources for this week. Then consider how disasters may alter federal to state relations for response and recovery. Select two disasters and reflect on how federal and state relations might impact the field of emergency management. Do not choose 9/11 or Hurricane Katrina as your disaster. Think about different disasters that might have had an impact on different governmental levels.

By Day 4

Post a brief description of each of the two disasters you selected. Then explain the specific policy that resulted from these disasters and their impact on the field of emergency management. Finally, describe the challenges that these disasters might present to emergency managers in establishing intergovernmental relationships for response and recovery.

Be sure to use the Learning Resources and current literature to support your response.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ postings.

By Day 6

Respond to at least one colleague and provide a different perspective on how your colleague’s disaster might have influenced specific policy. Describe any insight you have gained from reading your colleague’s pos

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