Walton County Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS)

What is the Walton County Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS), and why do we need one? 

According to the FL Department of Emergency Management, "a Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS) is a plan developed by the county to reduce and or eliminate the risks associated with natural and man-made hazards. These plans must be in accordance with the Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000 (DMA 2000). DMA 2000 is a mechanism for collaboration between state and local entities that encourages pre-disaster planning, recognizes need for mitigation, and designates funding for projects through Federal grant opportunities. The Florida Division of Emergency Management Mitigation Planning Unit assists counties in the update and review process of the LMS. They serve as a resource for technical advice, knowledge of funding sources, and general information regarding hazard mitigation. Without an approved LMS a county will be unable to apply for many Federal grants, and the LMS must be updated every five years to remain compliant."

Why does this page discuss the Walton County Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS), and why is this on the city's webpage?
The LMS plan is designed to identify and implement best management practices for reducing risks for many hazards and natural disasters. All jurisdictions within Walton County have chosen to become partners in the LMS planning process and collaborate to ensure the needs and desires of our citizens and governments work in unison toward common goals. The plan is titled "Walton County Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS) Plan" as it serves the entire county; this includes the City of DeFuniak Springs (as well as Freeport, Paxton and all unincorporated areas of the county). 

At their regular meeting of July 27, 2015, the DeFuniak Springs City Council adopted the plan by resolution. By doing so, the city and its residents enjoy all of the protections and grant opportunities available to the county. A copy of the resolution can be viewed by selecting the following link:  

Who creates and updates the Walton County LMS Plan?

These tasks are the responsibility of the Walton County Local Mitigation Strategy Work Group.  According to Walton County Department of Emergency Management, "the purpose of the Walton County Local Mitigation Strategy Work Group is to plan for a decrease in the vulnerability of the citizens, governments, businesses and institutions of Walton County from the future human, economic and environmental costs of natural, technological, and human caused disasters. This group is made up of representatives from local, State, and Federal agencies, business and industry, and private citizens to develop, monitor, implement, and maintain a comprehensive multi-jurisdictional plan for hazard mitigation that is be intended to accomplish this purpose and to promote a sustainable and disaster-resistant community."

Who are the members of the Walton County LMS Work Group?

The link below will take you to a list of current LMS Work Group members. While the planning director is currently the city's official LMS representative, you can be assured that all city departments are invited to participate in the LMS planning process, LMS meetings, emergency management training, and all other aspects of this important program.  

LMS Officers and Members
Note: This information is provided and maintained by Walton County Department of Emergency Management, and the link is to the roster on their website.

How can the public access the Walton County LMS Plan?

The links below are provided to ensure our citizens and other interested parties have access to LMS documents. The name of each link will describe documents contained within the links.  

2015 Walton County LMS: FEMA Approval Letter

2015 Walton County LMS: Local Mitigation Strategy Plan (Sections 1-7)

2015 Walton County LMS Plan: General Appendices (Section 8)

2015 Walton County LMS Plan: Map Appendices (Section 9)

Who can I call for more information? 

Feel free to contact Kelly Schultz, AICP, the city's planning director for more information: