Chapter 2.76
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT1

Sections:

2.76.010    Purpose.

2.76.020    Emergency management policy.

2.76.030    Definitions.

2.76.040    Emergency management plan.

2.76.050    Emergency management program.

2.76.060    Administrator of emergency management – Powers and duties.

2.76.070    Disaster and emergency powers of the mayor.

2.76.080    Function and duties of divisions and employees.

2.76.090    Administrator of emergency management – Additional powers and duties.

2.76.100    Liability limited.

2.76.110    Violation – Penalty.

2.76.010 Purpose.

The declared purposes of this chapter are to provide for the preparation, and carrying out of plans for emergency mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery for persons and property within the city in the event of an emergency or disaster, and to provide for the coordination of the emergency functions and services of the city with other public agencies and affected private persons, corporations and organizations. Any expenditures made in connection with such emergency management activities, including mutual aid activities, and mock or practice drills, shall be deemed conclusively to be for the direct protection and benefit of the inhabitants and property of the city. (Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1593 § 1, 1993)

2.76.020 Emergency management policy.

It shall be the policy of the city to make effective preparation and use of manpower, resources and facilities for dealing with any emergency or disaster that may occur. Disasters and emergencies by their very nature, may disrupt or destroy existing systems and capabilities of the city to respond to protect life, public health and public property. Therefore, citizens are advised to be prepared to be self-sufficient for up to 72 hours should an emergency or disaster occur, including provisions for food, water, shelter and basic medication. (Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1593 § 2, 1993)

2.76.030 Definitions.

As used in this chapter:

A. “Administrator” means the administrator of emergency management for the city. The administrator of emergency management for the city is the city administrator.

B. “Director” means the director of emergency management for the city. The fire chief of Pierce County Fire Protection District No. 22 (DBA East Pierce Fire and Rescue) is the director of emergency management for the city.

C. “Emergency disaster” means an event or set of circumstances which (1) demands immediate action to preserve public health, protect life, protect public property, or to provide relief to any stricken neighborhood overtaken by such occurrences, or (2) reaches such a dimension or degree of destructiveness as to warrant the city council proclaiming the existence of a disaster or the Governor declaring a state of emergency in accordance with appropriate local and state statute.

D. “Emergency management” means the preparation to carry out all emergency functions, other than functions for which the military forces are normally responsible, to mitigate, prepare for and recover from emergencies and disasters and aid victims suffering from injury or damage resulting from disasters caused by all hazards, whether natural or man-made, and to provide support for search and rescue operations for persons and property in distress. It shall not include, nor does any provision of this chapter apply to any condition relating to a labor controversy.

E. “Emergency management organization” means the functions and duties of divisions and employees as defined in SMC 2.76.080. (Ord. 2200 § 2, 2007; Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1593 § 3, 1993)

2.76.040 Emergency management plan.

The emergency plan prepared by the fire chief of Pierce County Fire Protection District No. 22 (DBA East Pierce Fire and Rescue) and promulgated by the mayor and adopted by the city council shall be the official emergency management plan of the city. The fire chief of Pierce County Fire Protection District No. 22 (DBA East Pierce Fire and Rescue) shall file a copy of said plan in the office of the city clerk and distribute copies to appropriate city agencies. (Ord. 2200 § 3, 2007: Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1593 § 4, 1993)

2.76.050 Emergency management program.

The emergency management program of the city is created and shall be comprised of:

A. The administrator, who shall have direct responsibility for the organization, administration and operation of the emergency management program for the city and direct responsibility for the emergency operations of departments of the administrative branch of government. The administrator shall be appointed by the mayor;

B. Compensated members of the emergency management organization;

C. Volunteer members of the emergency management organization;

D. Such advisory committees as may be appointed by the administrator;

E. The city may form and develop its own emergency management operation/program, or may contract pursuant to chapter 39.34 RCW for emergency management services with another political subdivision which does have an approved emergency management program in accordance with chapter 38.52 RCW. (Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1889 § 17 (part), 1999: Ord. 1593 § 5, 1993)

2.76.060 Administrator of emergency management – Powers and duties.

A. To request the city council to proclaim the existence or threatened existence of a disaster and the termination thereof, if the city council is in session, or to issue such proclamation, if the city council is not in session, subject to confirmation by the city council at the earliest practicable time;

B. To request the Governor to proclaim a state of extreme emergency when, in the opinion of the administrator, the resources of the area or region are inadequate to cope with the disaster;

C. To direct coordination and cooperation between divisions, services and staff of the departments and services of this city to carry out the provisions of the emergency management plan, and to resolve questions of authority and responsibility that may arise between them;

D. To recommend for adoption by the city council emergency management plans and mutual aid agreements. (Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1593 § 6, 1993)

2.76.070 Disaster and emergency powers of the mayor.

In the event of the proclamation of a disaster as herein provided or the proclamation of a state of extreme emergency by the Governor or the State Director of Emergency Management, the mayor is empowered:

A. To make and issue rules and regulations on matters reasonably related to the protection of life and property as affected by such disaster; provided, however, such rules and regulations must be confirmed at the earliest practicable time by the city council. If the mayor is absent then those duties are delegated to the city administrator. If the mayor and city administrator are absent then those duties will be delegated to the director of emergency management. In the absence of the director of emergency management then those duties will be delegated to the chief of police;

B. To obtain vital supplies, equipment and such other properties found lacking and needed for the protection of life and property of the people and bind the city for the fair value thereof, and if required immediately, to commandeer the same for public use;

C. To require services of any city officer or employee, and in the event of the proclamation of a state of extreme emergency by the Governor in the region in which the city is located, to command the aid of as many citizens of this city as may be deemed necessary in the execution of the mayor’s duties; such persons to be entitled to all privileges, benefits and immunities as are provided by state law for registered emergency workers;

D. To requisition necessary personnel or material of any city department or agency;

E. To control and direct the efforts of the emergency management organization of this city for the accomplishment of the purposes of this chapter. (Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1889 § 17 (part), 1999: Ord. 1593 § 7, 1993)

2.76.080 Function and duties of divisions and employees.

All officers and employees of the city, together with those volunteer forces enrolled to aid them during an emergency or disaster and all groups, organizations and persons who may by agreement or operation of law, including persons pressed into service under the provisions of SMC 2.76.070 shall be charged with duties incident to the protection of life and property in this city during such emergency or disaster, shall constitute the emergency management organization of the city. (Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1593 § 8, 1993)

2.76.090 Administrator of emergency management – Additional powers and duties.

Concurrently with the adoption of this chapter, the administrator is empowered:

A. To act on behalf of the mayor if he/she is unable to carry out his/her duties in carrying out the purposes of this chapter or the provisions of the emergency management plan;

B. To represent the emergency management organization of the city in dealing with issues pertaining to emergency management;

C. To prepare and maintain the emergency plan of the city and manage the day-to-day responsibilities of the emergency management program activities of the city. (Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1889 § 17 (part), 1999: Ord. 1593 § 9, 1993)

2.76.100 Liability limited.

No individual, firm, association, corporation or other party, owning, maintaining or controlling any building or premises who voluntarily and without compensation grants to the city a license or privilege or otherwise permits the city to inspect, designate and use the whole or any part or parts of such building or premises for the purpose of sheltering persons during an actual, impending, mock or practice emergency or disaster, or their successors in interest, or agents or employees of any of them, shall be subject to liability for injuries sustained by any person while in or upon said building or premises as a result of the condition of said building or premises as a result of any act or omission in connection with the upkeep or maintenance thereof (except a willful act of misconduct), when such person has entered or gone into or upon said building or premises for the purpose of seeking refuge therein during an emergency or disaster or attacks by enemies of the United States or during an emergency or disaster drill or test ordered by lawful authority. (Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1593 § 10, 1993)

2.76.110 Violation – Penalty.

It is a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine not to exceed $1,000, or by imprisonment for a term not to exceed 90 days, or both, for any person during a disaster to:

A. Willfully obstruct, hinder or delay any member of the emergency management organization in the enforcement of any lawful rule or regulation issued pursuant to this chapter, or in the performance of any duty imposed upon them by virtue of this chapter;

B. Do any act forbidden by any lawful rules or regulations issued pursuant to this chapter, if such act is of such nature as to give, or be likely to give assistance to the enemy, or imperil the lives or property of inhabitants of this city, or to prevent, hinder or delay the protection thereof;

C. Wear, carry or display, without authority, any means of identification specified by the State Department of Emergency Management. (Ord. 2036 § 1 (part), 2003: Ord. 1593 § 11, 1993)


1

For statutory provisions regarding the authority for the establishment of local organization for emergency management, see RCW 38.52.070; and for provisions regarding the municipality’s limitations of liability with respect to emergency management, see RCW 38.52.180.