8.01.01 State of Emergency Declaration

A state of emergency is a situation in which a government is empowered to be able to put through policies that it would normally not be permitted to do, for the safety and protection of their citizens. Scenarios that may require an Emergency Declaration may include:

  1. Natural Disaster:
    • Winter Storms, Hurricanes, Tornadoes, and Droughts
  2. Man-made Disasters:
    • Civil Unrest, Haz/Mat incident, Nuclear
  3. Health Disaster:
    • Medical pandemic or epidemic, other bio-security risk.

The declaration of a local emergency can be the first step in requesting state resources from the Governor and federal resources from the President.

Powers and Duties

Emergency Management authority is documented in Chapter 12 of the Minnesota Statutes (Appendix A):

  1. Activates the state or local Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) (Section 12.29)
  2. Authorizes aid and assistance (Section 12.29).
  3. When necessary to save life and property, may (1) require any person, except members of federal or state military forces and officers of the state or political subdivision, to perform services for civil defense purposes, and (2) commandeer, during a civil defense emergency, any motor vehicles, tools, appliances or any other personal property, with prompt, just compensation for the use thereof and all damages done to the property while so used for civil defense purposes (Section 12.34).
  4. Empowers state/local government to enter into contracts and incur obligations necessary to combat the disaster/emergency by protecting the health and safety of persons and property, and providing emergency assistance to the victims of such disaster/emergency (authorizes such powers without compliance with time-consuming procedures and formalities prescribed by law pertaining to the performance of public work, entering into contracts, incurring obligations, employment of temporary workers, rental of equipment, purchase of supplies and materials, limitations upon tax levies, and that appropriation and expenditure of public funds (Section 12.37).

Actions

  1. The Emergency Management Director SHALL declare a state of local emergency to exist.
  2. The Emergency Management Director will confer with the County Board Chair when contemplating a declaration of a State of Local Emergency and prior to the actual Declaration. The Emergency Management Director is authorized to declare a state of emergency in the entire county or portion thereof if, in his/her judgment, as a result of natural or unnatural causes, conditions may present severe hazards to life and property.
  3. A Resolution declaring a Local State of Emergency SHALL be drafted and submitted to the County Chair (Appendix B). The Resolution may provide additional delineations for additional clarity. Examples include:
    1. Curfews to provide Law Enforcement personnel the ability to control access to particular areas.
    2. Evacuations to remove potential victims from the dangers associated with the incident.
    3. Restrict access to certain geographic areas in order to allow only emergency response personnel to specific areas.
    4. Rationing of resources, i.e., odd/even watering days, odd/even license of resource per pickup period to provide control over limited resources.
    5. Travel Restrictions Prohibiting all NON-EMERGENCY related travel to protect lives and allow emergency work to be accomplished.
    6. Restrictions on vehicle parking to be able to keep roads clear for emergency response vehicles.
  4. Upon issuing a Declaration of a Local State of Emergency, the Emergency Management Director SHALL have complete authority to issue such orders as may be necessary to implement and carry out Emergency Management operations and to protect the health, safety, and resources of the residents of the municipality.
  5. The County Chair SHALL convene a meeting of the County Board within three days to approve continuation of the State of Emergency. (Minnesota Statutes Chapter 12, Section 12.29) (Appendix A).
  6. When the situation stabilized and there no longer a need to have the special orders in effect the Declaration of Emergency must be rescinded. A Resolution ending the State of Emergency SHALL be drafted Appendix C). The County Chair SHALL convene a meeting of the County Board to approve the Resolution.

Appendix A

MN Statute 12.29

12.29 DECLARATION OF LOCAL EMERGENCY.

Subdivision 1. Authority to declare emergency.

A local emergency may be declared only by the mayor of a municipality or the chair of a county board of commissioners or their legal successors. It may not be continued for a period in excess of three days except by or with the consent of the governing body of the political subdivision. Any order or proclamation declaring, continuing, or terminating a local emergency must be given prompt and general publicity and filed promptly by the chief of the local record-keeping agency of the political subdivision.

Subdivision 2. Effect of declaration of emergency.

A declaration of a local emergency invokes necessary portions of the response and recovery aspects of applicable local or inter-jurisdictional disaster plans, and may authorize aid and assistance under those plans.

Subdivision 3. Inter-jurisdictional agencies.

No inter-jurisdictional agency or official may declare a local emergency unless expressly authorized by the agreement under which the agency functions. However, an inter-jurisdictional disaster agency shall provide aid and services in accordance with the agreement under which it functions.

Appendix B

Resolution Declaring a State of Emergency (Example)

Variable information describing the event and dates are highlighted in red for clarity.

Resolution Declaring a State of Emergency

WHEREAS the blizzard conditions and heavy snowfall event on January 22, 2018 impacted the population of Steele County and its cities; and

WHEREAS the blizzard conditions and heavy snowfall event has caused a significant impact on public safety and travel; and

WHEREAS the Steele County Department of Emergency Management requests the Steele County Board of Commissioners to declare Steele County in a STATE OF EMERGENCY for the blizzard conditions and heavy snowfall event on January  22 2018;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Steele County Board of Commissioners declare Steele County in a State of Emergency for conditions resulting from the blizzard conditions and heavy snowfall event of January 22, 2018.

This resolution shall become effective upon its passage and without further publication. Adopted by the Steele County Board of Commissioners this 23rd day of January, 2018.

ATTEST:

I, _______________________, County Administrator, hereby attest that the foregoing resolution was duly adopted by the Steele County Board of Commissioners on the ______________ day of ________________, 20____.

__________________________________________

County Administrator

 

 

Appendix C

Resolution Ending a State of Emergency (Example)

Variable information describing the event and dates are highlighted in red for clarity.

Resolution Ending the State of Emergency

WHEREAS the blizzard conditions and heavy snowfall event on January 22, 2018 impacted the population of Steele County and its cities have ended; and

WHEREAS the blizzard conditions and heavy snowfall event has caused a significant impact on public safety and travel have ended; and

WHEREAS the Steele County Department of Emergency Management requests the Steele County Board of Commissioners to end the STATE OF EMERGENCY for the blizzard conditions and heavy snowfall event in Steele County on January 23 2018;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Steele County Board of Commissioners declare end of the State of Emergency in Steele County from the conditions resulting from the blizzard conditions and heavy snowfall event of January 22, 2018.

This resolution shall become effective upon its passage and without further publication. Adopted by the Steele County Board of Commissioners this 23rd day of January, 2018.

ATTEST:

I, _______________________, County Administrator, hereby attest that the foregoing resolution was duly adopted by the Steele County Board of Commissioners on the ______ day of ________________, 20____.

__________________________________________

County Administrator