Local Emergency Managers

Director's Roles and Responsibilities

As the local EMA Director for your community, you work for and are responsible to the elected officials. Local elected officials are assisted in their efforts to provide a viable emergency management capability by the coordination efforts of the local EMA Director. The State EMA Director is responsible for assuring that effective EMA programs exist at all levels of government in Maine.

The duties and responsibilities of local EMA Directors are outlined in Title 37-B and are summarized as follows:

1. The local EMA Director is appointed by the municipal officers of the jurisdiction. The director may not be one of the executive officers or a member of the executive body of the jurisdiction. However, the director may be a town manager or the town's administrative assistant. A director may be removed by the appointing authority for cause.

2. The director of each local organization will meet with the MEMA Director or the agency's representative (usually the County EMA Director) annually, in order to review the performance of the local EMA organization in carrying out its federal and state mandates and to jointly set new goals for the coming year.

3. Each EMA in the state, in consultation with MEMA, will prepare and keep a current disaster emergency plan for the area subject to its jurisdiction. That plan will include without limitation:

  • An identification of disasters to which the jurisdiction is or may be vulnerable, specifically indicating the areas most likely to be affected;

  • Actions to minimize damage;

  • Identification of personnel, equipment, and supplies required to implement the preceding actions, to include procedures for accessing these resources;

  • Recommendations to appropriate public and private agencies of all preventive measures found reasonable in light of risk and cost; and

  • Other elements required by federal or state rule.

All planning must be coordinated with the hospitals in the jurisdiction. (Although not defined by law, MEMA also recommends that planning be coordinated with airports, major industries, schools, and volunteer agencies such as the Red Cross.)

4. The director of each local civil emergency preparedness organization shall, in collaboration with other public and private agencies within the State, develop or cause to be developed mutual aid arrangements for reciprocal civil emergency preparedness aid and assistance in case of a disaster too great to be dealt with unassisted. These arrangements shall be consistent with the state emergency management program, and in time of emergency it shall be the duty of each local EMA to render aid in accordance with these agreements. All agreements are subject to the approval of the MEMA director.

State law also says that each County or Regional EMA organization will receive the support and cooperation of the municipalities within its jurisdiction. (Chapter 13, Title 37B, ' 781, paragraph 2.)