State Auditor Releases "Emergency Accountability Plan for Local Governments"

State Auditor Phil Bryant announced Thursday that his office has created an "Emergency Accountability Plan for Local Governments."  The idea came about after meeting with Governor Barbour and representatives from the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency regarding the effects of Hurricane Katrina on local government operation and service.

Several county and municipal governments were severely crippled after being hit by Katrina.  During and immediately after the storm 'emergency responders' all along the coast heroically met the challenged of an unprecedented natural disaster.

Local leaders and elected officials knew they had to salvage what they could, assess basic operational needs and reestablish daily government functions.

Now, with the "Emergency Accountability Plan," local entities and leaders will have a compact and concise summary preparedness plan to help navigate the aftermath of any act of nature.

For instance, under the first section entitled 'Emergency Management' the plan addresses everything from emergency definitions and operations to coordination of manpower and working on private property.

Section two under the heading 'Fiscal Management' covers an array of critical categories - general purchasing and the bid process, procurement cards, emergency purchasing and vehicle use during an emergency - just to name a few.

This plan is a concise summary, not a comprehensive manual.  It provides the basics, and contains a resource list of other state agencies you may refer to.

Upon completion of this report Auditor Bryant stated, "It is vitally important for local governments to be prepared for the challenges of a disaster.   Our purpose is to help limit the loss of revenue or de-obligation of federal funds.  I encourage elected officials and local government directors to make this guide a part of their emergency plan."