This morning the Interagency Committee on School Construction will meet to discuss draft requirements for school upgrades that create a new process for review by the Maryland Emergency Management Agency. As described in the draft procedure, if a school submits an application for a construction project that includes electrical improvements to a major portion of the facility, the school will have to comply with new process requiring back-up power generation hook-ups. The new procedure mandates inspections and review by MEMA to determine whether the facility can be used as a shelter.
MACo has submitted a letter for the Committee’s consideration during its deliberations. In its letter, MACo states in part that
Requiring local education agencies to coordinate only through the areas designated by the Maryland Emergency Management Administration would overlook the extended cooperative work happening currently across county agencies, facility planners, and officials at multiple levels of government.
MACo and our county government professionals who guide emergency planning urge that local plans and collaborations not be omitted from any new state guidance or regulations regarding school facilities. Counties stand ready to work with the Commission or other stakeholders to reach assurances that our children and communities are best served in this regard.