To ensure that Maryland families, communities, and key stakeholders are provided the tools they need to prepare for, mitigate against, respond to, and recover from the consequences of emergency and disaster events.
MEMA has three directorates which are underneath the Office of the Executive Director – Strategy, Operations, and Administration. The structure enables MEMA to efficiently support local jurisdictions, work with state agencies, run our internal operations, and provide preparedness information to the public. Each directorate is led by a director with a unique mission—the combination of these missions is the agency’s core direction.
The Strategy Directorate includes the Regional Liaison Officers, MEMA's External Outreach Branch, and a strategy team focused on Maryland's two urban areas and overall agency strategy and direction. The Regional Liaison program assists with formulating continuous situational awareness of incidents occurring throughout Maryland and works with the External Outreach Branch to promote preparedness for all of Maryland jurisdictions. The External Outreach Branch provides preparedness resources, tools, and information to Maryland residents, communities, voluntary and faith-based groups, and the private sector before, during, and after disasters.
The Operations Directorate includes the Planning Branch, Exercising and Training Branch, Maryland Joint Operations Center (MJOC), State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) management, and the Geographic Information System (GIS) and Mitigation Units. The Directorate coordinates Maryland’s emergency operations program and also ensures ongoing situational awareness of incidents occurring throughout the State. The MJOC is operated round-the-clock, every day of the year by National Guard and emergency management professionals-- it was the first joint civilian-military watch center in the country. The MJOC serves as a communications hub for emergency responders and alerts decision-makers in Maryland when a situation warrants. In times of disaster, the Executive Director of MEMA activates the SEOC to support local governments. Representatives from state agencies, as well as some federal agencies, the private sector and volunteer organizations, are represented in the SEOC. Representatives have the authority to make decisions and assign resources necessary on behalf of their agency for emergency response. When the Governor declares a state of emergency, MEMA works with FEMA to request a Presidential Disaster Declaration and provide assistance to those affected by the disaster.
The preparedness programs, which include planning, training and exercising, are also a part of the Operations Directorate. The Planning Branch produces preparedness plans and involves stakeholders in emergency management planning efforts. The Training and Exercising Branch develops and conducts training programs and exercises for state and local partners. The Mitigation Unit develops and oversees projects in local communities that reduce or eliminate the impact of future disasters.
The Administration Directorate includes all functions related to finance, grants management, procurement, public assistance, information technology, human resources, and safety. The Directorate manages the agency’s budget and finance, grants, public assistance program, and IT support. The federal grants include the Homeland Security Grant Program, Emergency Management Performance Grant, and FEMA mitigation and recovery programs. Following some federally declared disasters, the MEMA public assistance program will provide federal funding to impacted state and jurisdictional government agencies and qualifying non-profits that responded to the emergency.
MEMA’s authority derives from Article 14 of the Annotated Code of Maryland. This Article creates MEMA and authorizes the political subdivisions of the state to create emergency management offices of their own. Article 14 also gives the Governor emergency powers – such as temporarily waiving state laws during emergency response operations. While MEMA is part of the Maryland Military Department and under the authority of the Adjutant General, during emergencies the Governor may assume direct authority over the agency and the Executive Director of MEMA reports directly to the Governor.
MEMA is consistently improving Maryland’s emergency preparedness through augmenting the efforts and skills of our partners and providing resources and tools that residents, communities, and stakeholders need to better prepare for, mitigate against, respond to, and recover from disasters.
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5401 Rue Saint Lo Drive, Reisterstown, MD
Toll Free: 1-877-MEMA-USA (1-877-636-2872)