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About PEMA

Mission And Authority

The mission of PEMA is to prepare for, prevent, respond to, and recover from manmade and natural all hazard emergencies and acts of terrorism. PEMA develops and maintains partnerships with all levels of government and the private sector; plans, trains and educates; coordinates response and resources; and provides technical and financial assistance.

The Pennsylvania Emergency Management Council

The Pennsylvania Emergency Management Council establishes policy and direction for the emergency management program statewide. The council membership includes the governor, the lieutenant governor, the secretaries of the various state departments with emergency response and recovery capabilities, the leadership of the General Assembly, and representatives of county and municipal government associations, labor, business and industry, and the private sector. The council meets at least three times a year and within 72 hours after the governor declares a disaster emergency.

In addition to the council's responsibilities set forth in the Code, the council also reviews and approves certain actions required under other laws, such as the Radiation Protection Act. Under that Act the council approves annual programs of work and spending plans for counties in emergency planning zones by the five nuclear power generating stations affecting the Commonwealth.

The council also acts as the State Emergency Response Commission which oversees the various hazardous materials emergency preparedness and response requirements contained in the federal Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 (SARA Title III).