by Lynn Tipton, FCCMA Executive Director
When I think back to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, I’m so heartened by the many FCCMA members who volunteered to go and help…not just New Orleans, but also the small towns in Alabama and Mississippi. You brought back amazing stories and helped us realize that our disaster recovery plans are better than many other states. I also know that many of your cities and counties reached out with donations to Haiti following their devastating earthquakes in 2010. One of FCCMA’s best qualities has always been its willingness to reach out and share best practices, equipment and personnel – such big hearts among all of you!
ICMA has named one of the ICMA grants to help in Haiti. ICMA needs cities to partner with three Haitian ‘communes’ for their municipal level expertise in the areas of water, wastewater, storm water and solid waste. If your city, town or village is in Palm Beach, Broward or Miami-Dade Counties, you’ll receive an email later this week with an RFP to be one of the three cities to be matched with the three communes.
I’ve been helping the ICMA international staff identify possible partners, and to help identify planners, engineers, managers, water/waste water experts (especially those with Creole language skills), and also a few elected officials, to be part of this team.
I hope you’ll take a good look at the proposal and let the ICMA staff know if you can apply. It is a short turn-around time, and the first visit of Floridians to Haiti will be this summer. I know that some of your communities also have large Haitian and Haitian-descent populations; that might make this match even better.
Thank you for always being generous with your time, talents and teams!