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Input needed for Local Mitigation Strategy Workshop March 21

Residents and businesses are invited to a workshop and community open house to provide their observations and concerns about local natural and man-made hazards throughout Pinellas County. The event will be held on Thursday, March 21, from 6 – 8 p.m., at the Lealman Exchange, located at 5175 45th Street N., in St. Petersburg.

Attendees will be able to learn more about the Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS) plan, currently-identified hazards such as storm surge vulnerability, sea level rise and flooding, while sharing their observations about different hazards that may be impacting them.

The workshop is the first step in the federally-mandated five-year update of the LMS plan. The LMS is required by the Federal Emergency Management Agency in order for the county and participating municipalities to remain eligible to receive federal hazard mitigation grant funds for projects that eliminate the risks associated with these hazards. The LMS also serves as the county's floodplain management plan, earning credits towards flood insurance premium discounts for property owners within participating jurisdictions under the National Flood Insurance Program’s Community Rating System.

The workshop will also include information booths staffed with experts to evaluate a property owner’s risk for flooding, look up flood zones and hurricane evacuation zones, provide advice about purchasing flood insurance and preparing for hurricanes and other emergencies, and information about sea level rise. In addition, members of the Lealman Community Emergency Response Team and Pinellas County Mosquito Control will be onsite to offer their expertise.

For more information about the Local Mitigation Strategy, visit www.pinellaslms.org.