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Tidal Basin Chief Operations Officer, Mark Misczak, Featured in West Virginia Newspaper Article on Navigating Disaster Preparedness and Response During a Pandemic

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Tidal Basin’s Chief Operations Officer, Mark Misczak was recently featured in an article of the Beckley-West Virginia Register-Herald and the Fayette Tribune on how to navigate responding to and recovering from disasters during a pandemic. Misczak, who leads the operations and contract execution for the Tidal Basin Group, is a former FEMA Acting Division Director and Deputy Director for Individual Assistance.

Misczak says FEMA adjusted their response procedures to account for the impacts of the pandemic and to ensure their responders stay safe while implementing the agency’s various disaster assistance programs. “Carrying out evacuation orders issued for families and businesses could be dramatically affected by COVID-19,” Misczak was quoted saying.  “Shelters which are normally open might not be, for example, and that means people have to evacuate further. Supplies might not be as readily available, either,” he told the Register-Herald. 

Beckley, West Virginia is in the southeastern part of the state, not far from where torrential flooding occurred in 2016.  In June 2020, Tidal Basin began working with the West Virginia Development Office (WVDO) to develop the State of West Virginia Community Development Block Grant-Mitigation Draft Proposed Action Plan, which is currently available for public review and comment. The draft plan was released on August 24, 2020 for a 45-day public comment period, which will extend through October 8. The final approved Action Plan will address how the state will mitigate against future floods.

Misczak said he understands West Virginia faces different challenges than some other states in dealing with flooding. “First, I acknowledge that West Virginia flooding is different,” with it being of the inland variety rather than coastal. “Most dangerous is the potential for flash flooding. And a high number of critical facilities, such as fire departments, are located in flood plains, which creates problems.”

To see the entire article in the Register-Herald, click here.