The past year and a half has been a very busy one for emergency managers. The Covid19 National Emergency Declaration is not only the first true “National” scale active emergency since the formation of Civil Defense in 1950 and the creation of FEMA in 1979, but it is also one of the longest disaster responses in U.S. history. The Maine Association of Local Emergency Managers (MALEM) has not been active during this disaster timeframe. We hope to turn this around. With your help, we can accomplish that.
The MALEM website (www.malem.org) has been reorganized and updated. We encourage the Association membership to participate in this online tool. Please send us your thoughts and news for the blog. Please also let us know what you would like to see on the website. Under the Resources page, you will find helpful links and documents. We would love to know what other links and documents you would like to see.
We are in the process of updating our Association Bylaws to reflect changes in how we would like to operate. As with anything, some of the ideas that went into the originally approved bylaws in 2009, have not worked out well. It is time for a refresh. These Bylaws changes will be coming out for the membership to vote on soon. We will accomplish the bylaw vote electronically in order to provide the most opportunity.
If approved in the bylaw changes, we will be reducing the Association annual dues from $25 to $10. We are optimistic this will retain and recruit more people. The Executive Committee has been very frugal with the Association funds and have found that we can operate without large sums of money. Maximum use of the internet has been very helpful by reducing the amount of funds for postage and printing.
We are in looking at the prospects of establishing a scholarship program for members who are working on an emergency management degree. This is in early development.
One of our members is working on her Master’s Degree thesis from the Center for Homeland Defense and Security. She would like to have more emergency managers complete a survey for her thesis. We encourage all members to participate by proceeding to: https://navalpostgradfedramp.gov1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_2tpunI9aDPecurA .
We are looking for members to participate in several Association committees. These include: Awards, Education, Legislative and Membership. If anyone is interested in joining a committee, please feel free to contact me.
We are in the initial stages of organizing an Annual Association Meeting for later this summer. The proposal includes 5-10 “Lightning Talks” speakers discussing their thoughts on lessons they learned from the Covid19 pandemic response and recovery. We plan to schedule this meeting for a date in August.
Finally, the Association is looking to staff a booth at the “Eastern Maine Emergency Preparedness Expo” scheduled for Saturday, September 11, 2021 from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor. We are in need of Association members who would be willing to help staff the booth. I hope you can volunteer. MALEM can be a huge resource for emergency managers throughout Maine, but we need your help. Thank you for being members and for your dedication to the safety and security of all our residents and visitors.