Emergency Management—About the Department
About the Department
The Hays County Office of Emergency Management (HCOEM) provides an all-hazards approach to emergency management and homeland security services for Hays County. The major areas of focus include emergency management and homeland security planning and policy; emergency management and homeland security grant administration; the countywide emergency training and exercise program; public preparedness and education; and enhancement of county’s response and recovery capabilities. Hays County OEM is committed to preparing for, responding to, recovering from, mitigating, and preventing threats posed to Hays County. These threats include natural disasters, man-made disasters (including terrorism), and technological disasters. Hays County OEM coordinates emergency management and homeland security activities with all Hays County agencies, as well as the Capitol Area Council of Governments (CAPCOG), private organizations, faith-based organizations, volunteer organizations, and other local, state, and federal agencies.
Hays County OEM provides leadership, vision, direction, and subject matter expertise in the field of emergency management and homeland security in order to heighten the County’s readiness to respond to and recover from major emergencies and disasters. In the event of a major emergency or disaster affecting Hays County, the Hays County Office of Emergency Management will activate and manage the County’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC). The EOC becomes the command and coordination point for all County emergency management activities. Furthermore, County OEM serves as the coordination point for federal disaster assistance, county recovery efforts, and prevention / mitigation programs to reduce the effects of future disasters. In addition, the County OEM serves as the liaison to regional, state, federal, volunteer, faith-based, and private partners in order to prepare for, effectively respond to, and efficiently recover from significant emergency and disaster events. These partnerships are enhanced through mutual aid agreements, memorandum of understanding, and inter-local agreements.
The County OEM develops and maintains the County’s Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan (CEMP), and directs emergency management planning for the unincorporated areas of Hays County as well as the cities of Buda, Dripping Springs, City of Hays, Kyle, Mountain City, Niederwald, Uhland, Village of Bear Creek, Wimberley, and Woodcreek. The CEMP guides strategic organizational behavior before, during, and after a significant emergency or disaster in Hays County and jurisdictions included within the CEMP. This document serves as the foundational guide for County/City emergency and disaster preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation efforts. In addition, the County OEM coordinates emergency training, simulations, and exercises necessary to prepare County staff and partner agencies to carry out their roles in the County CEMP.
Emergency Management Director AND Coordinator
The Director of Emergency Management and Homeland Security for Hays County is the Hays County Judge. The County Judge appoints the Emergency Management Coordinator (EMC) to oversee the day to day Emergency Management and Homeland Security Programs for the County. The Emergency Management Coordinator (EMC) is responsible for maintaining the County’s Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan (CEMP) for all hazards. This plan is based on an analysis of the hazards that could occur in the County and Central Texas area.
The CEMP addresses these hazards using four phases of emergency management: mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery. When an impending emergency disaster is known, the EMC may activate the Emergency Operations Center (EOC). The EOC is staffed with members of the various departments within the County, the City of San Marcos, and other jurisdictions which may be affected by the emergency or event, state and federal representatives, as well as members of the faith based and community based organizations active in a disaster.
The EOC supports the Incident Command Post or On-Scene operations to ensure that responders have all the resources necessary to save lives, protect property, and the environment and then to recover from the disaster.