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Colorado Springs Together: A Private Sector Model for Recovery

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  1. Colorado Springs Together:A Private Sector Model for Recovery • Bob Cutter Founder and President, Colorado Springs Together • www.coloradospringstogether.org • April 30, 2014

  2. Waldo Canyon Fire 6/26/12 Explosive Growth 7/10/14 100% Contained

  3. Mountain Shadows 6/26/12 – 5pm Residential Destruction Loss of Life ---------------------------------- 6/27/12 Control

  4. 12 Months Later…Black Forest Fire! 6/11/13 Explosive Growth 6/20/13 100% Contained Black Forest Waldo Canyon Colorado Springs

  5. Similar… but…. Different Waldo Canyon Black Forest Instant loss of property 2 lives lost + 486 homes lost 15,000 acres burned Residential impact 23 sq. miles Year developed ~ 1920 Rural –wide class range Unincorporated El Paso County Recovery led by public + private Neighborhood Forest • 4 days before property loss • 2 lives lost + 347 homes lost • 18,000 acres burned • Residential impact 2sq. Miles • Year developed : 1985 • Suburban - upper middle class • City of Colorado Springs • Recovery led by private sector • Neighborhood Landscaping

  6. Colorado Springs Together Mission To serve as the primary community organization to bring the community spirit and substantial resources of the businesses and citizens of the Pikes Peak Region to restore the lives, homes and neighborhoods impacted by the Waldo Canyon Fire. We will restore these quickly and effectively. Incorporated 501(c)(3) on 7/3/12------Granted 8/22/12

  7. Why COS Together? • Speed, Leverage, Agility • Cross functional team – all sectors • FEMA Lessons Learned • Single organization • Coordination • Speed = Hope • Local ownership • Neighborhood involvement • Complete the job • Better than before

  8. What is COS Together? • Unified “command”-Type 1 Recovery Team • Volunteer Leadership • No government funding • Total Community Resources • Private Sector Driven • Public Sector Support • Non-Profit Participation • Neighborhood Involvement • Single Focus - Successful restoration Collaboration – Communication – Cooperation - Community Enhancement TEAMWORK

  9. Where is COS Together? • In the neighborhood ( Aug 2012-Jul 2013 ) • One stop shop • Ask the experts • Community Center • On line (July 2012 – Dec2013) • Resources • Daily information • Help • www.coloradospringstogether.org

  10. Our Role • Coordinate and lead • Leverage resources and skills • Keep it local • Be the focal point • LONG term recovery • Get assistance to people • Educate and Inform • Support and encourage

  11. Not Our Role • Direct financial assistance to people • Emergency response • Political lobbying / advocacy • Meeting human care needs • Business recovery • Crisis counseling and support Expert agencies involved Red Cross Long Term Recovery Group AspenpointeCare and ShareUnited Way SBA / SBDC Regional Business Alliance Faith-based organizations City of Colorado Springs El Paso County

  12. Results – 1 year later • Oct 12: - 6 (of 347) lots remain without permit to clear - Significant insurance settlements • Nov 12: - First people move into new home • Dec 12: - Only 1 site without debris removal plan • Jan 13:- 100 new home permits issued • Feb 13: - Mayor starts “homecoming” basket delivery • Mar 13: - Media tour of neighborhood • May 13: - 50% milestone – 176 permits issued • Jun 13: - Anniversary concert in the park - 200 permits issued + 78 completed

  13. What Did We Do? Fire Code Changes Community Center support Discount card program Kids Carnival Community Tree + Holiday Events Lessons learned presentations Community Center for neighborhood Club, HOA, MSCA gatherings Anniversary Concert in the park • Insurance assistance + support • Coordinated debris removal • E-blast information+ Video tutorials • Accredited contractors • Covenant assistance • Friday Markets with Care and Share • Sandbagging • Educational events • Art Auction – Memorial Fund

  14. By the Numbers - Over 2000 visitors to CST Center - Over 150 group meetings and presentations - 500+ hrs. of Aspenpointe crisis counseling - Over 200 individuals received insurance assistance - Over 540,000 e-blasts opened - 35,000+ unique visitors to website - 200,000+ web page views - One day after Black Forest Fire – 3,000+ web visitors - More than 3,000 discount cards issued + highest savings by individual ~ $30,000 - ~6,000 people attended anniversary event - Over 7,000 leadership volunteer hours

  15. Lessons Learned • Psychological impact significant – WIDE range • Insurance….insurance….insurance • GOOD, RELIABLE information ON TIME • Do not overload people • Mitigation helps • Need dedicated volunteer coordinator • Communicate need for, and use of, funds • Include schools and library district early • Replication requires leadership from the start

  16. Opportunities • Share experience and knowledge • Fire Departments + Communities + Insurance • Improved Insurance Claims Processes • Prepare and mitigate to reduce future risk • Along Front Range and Across Colorado • Mitigation must be an ongoing process • Prepare for disaster……. and for recovery • Education and communication

  17. Mountain Shadows Today 221 Homes Rebuilt 38 Under Construction 75% Recovery in 21mo. December 2013

  18. Black Forest Together Start Up • CST engaged on day 2 of fire • CST provided immediate web info. • VERY quick local agency response • Anniversary Concert + Art Auction • - New Beginning and Sign of Hope • Adapted CST model for recovery • Discount card • Mentor program • Extensive insurance consulting

  19. Private Sector Driven Recovery • Create market-based solutions • Access private-sector funds Foundations + Corporations + Individuals • In there for the long haul While government returns to normal business • Agility to meet changing needs in recovery • Functional focus >>>>> Neighborhood focus • Limited bureaucracy – Engage with all groups

  20. Colorado Springs Together: Insurance Lessons Learned John E. Putnam, CPCU, ARM Insurance Team Member jeputnam@aol.com Colorado Springs Together April 30, 2014

  21. Catastrophic Claims Environment

  22. Replacement Value • Most Replacement Values Understated • Wide Market Variations in Computing RV • Replacement – Market Value - Rebuild • Remodel/Upgrades Values Often Not Included • Replacement Costs Increase Post Catastrophe

  23. Replacement Value - Opportunities • Improved Processes for Estimating Pre-Loss Replacement Costs • Increased Consumer Education on Meaning and Importance of Replacement Costs

  24. Law & Ordinance • Jurisdictional Differences • Who Determines Application of Code? Agent, Customer, Adjuster, Builder • Which Codes Apply? Pre-Loss, Post-Loss, Both

  25. Law & Ordinance - Opportunities • Public-Private Dialogue to Increase Standardization of Codes • Increase Customer, Agent, and Adjuster Education Regarding L&O

  26. Smoke & Heat Claims • Can Partial Losses Be Worse Than Total Losses? • Minimal Consensus on Handling These Claims • Does Wildfire Smoke Damage Property? • How Do You Measure Damaging Heat?

  27. Smoke & Heat Claim - Opportunities • Private Industry Collaboration on Consistent Best Practices to Remediate Smoke • Better Methods for Determining Extent of Smoke and Heat Damage Claims • Accelerated Processes to Resolve Claims

  28. Uncovered Losses • Business Income in Tourist Area at Peak Season • Business Income Resulting from Subsequent Flash Floods • Business Income Losses From Home Businesses • Income Loss Due to Claim Activities

  29. Colorado Natural Disasters – The New Normal? • Short & Long Term Insurance Implications • Improved Claim Resolution Processes Required • Making the Case for Mitigation and Preparedness • Public - Private Partnerships for Risk Management, Preparedness and Recovery

  30. Questions?

  31. Lessons Learned from Colorado Disasters Governor’s Recovery Office

  32. 24 Counties… 28,000 People … 2,000 Square Miles of Land … Over $3B in damage … largest disaster in Colorado

  33. Why create a Governor’s Recovery Office? • Set priorities • Ensure appropriate sequencing is in place and visible internally and externally • Ensure all Federal, State and Local resources are identified and accessed • Deliver results with an ongoing sense of urgency • Assist local communities in having adequate match funding • Assist agencies with any roadblocks to speedy recovery • Stay coordinated with our delegation and Federal Agencies (e.g. HUD and FEMA) • Build for the future – make things better than before • Ensure 90% of short-term actions build towards a longer-term plan / vision

  34. Our first five months were all about coordination and communication • 100% State Roads operational by Dec 1st • 100% impacted families out of temporary housing by end of November • Communicate weekly via various channels • Maximize FEMA and other Federal / State funding available • Prepare for HUD CDBG – DR assessment and funds as part of mid to long term planning • With communities, create 2-3 year recovery strategy

  35. We organized our cross-functional team to drive towards action, transparency and results Recovery Working Team Represents agencies and cabinet involved in recovery efforts Recovery Managers Represents local counties; supported by CDPS and DOLA Recovery Office Represents Office of Emergency Management, Department of Public Safety and FEMA DHSEM / FEMA Represents Governor’s Office of overall plan, actions and progress Represents Colorado Department of Transportation and National Guard from 5 states CDOT / National Guard

  36. Measuring our progress was critical throughout our recovery (example below) 26

  37. Being able to connect with our communities in real time was a priority Most viewed pages: • Updates • Get Help • Volunteer/Donate • Social Media: • Twitter 341 followers • Facebook 271 likes Key Stats: • 27.7K page views • New visitors - 64% • 34% returning visitors • 18% coming in from mobile traffic

  38. We leveraged ColoradoUnited.com to capture issues and questions… with a 24 hour response CRO Owner: ABB

  39. As we move forward, we will not lose sight of our mid to long term strategy Recovery Area • Community / Economic • Small Business • Private Non Profit (PNP’s) • Cultural / Historical • Tourism (Loss) • Community Services (Loss) • Customers & Tax-base (Loss) • Facility Use • Access to Public Materials • Stream / Floodplains • Exigent Efforts • Mid-Long Term • Zoning • ABFE • BFE • Housing • Land Use • Transportation Corridors • Reconstruction of Public/Private Infrastructure • Future land Use • Future Zoning • Debris • Sediment • Tree / Brush (Woody) • Building, Pavement & Structure • Land Use • Transportation Corridors • Delays to Public/Private Rebuilding • Reconstruction / Retrofitting of Structures • Housing • Manufactured Housing Communities • Multi-family Structures • Single Family Structures • Residents - Owners & Renters • Small Business • Communities • Infrastructure • Private Roads • Private Bridges • County Roads • County Bridges • State Owned Elements • Dams • Access to Homes & Emergency Services • Water Rights • Diversion & Irrigation Companies Issue: Type: Impacts to: Environment -Wetlands -Riparian Habitat -Critical Habitat - NEPA Requirements - Mitigation Efforts - Other -

  40. Learnings as we move forward • Continue listening to others who have similar experiences, e.g. Vermont, New Jersey, and Alberta Canada • Full time effort over next 2 to 4 years – keep a constant sense of urgency daily • Cooperation and partnership at Federal, State and Local levels is key • Washington D.C. as an advocate • Private sector as a partner • Local community buy-in and leadership is critical • Transparency in how we address and fund “unmet needs”

  41. LYONS, COLORADO

  42. Lyons: A 500 year flood event • Lyons, Colorado: Town of 2,050 in the foothills at the confluence the North and South St Vrain Creeks in Boulder County • Typical peak spring run-off at confluence is 600-700 c.fs. • Estimated river volume at flood peak September 12th was 19,600 c.f.s. • With road and bridges washed out or under water, residents were isolated on six different ‘islands’ for several days before National Guard evacuation. One local resident died in the flood waters.

  43. Significant impacts on public infrastructure All utility systems (water, sewer, electric and gas) were damaged and inoperable Town Hall and library flooded (neither was in the floodplain) Public works building destroyed and all equipment in it lost Local public schools had to be temporarily relocated to Longmont due to lack of utilities and access Damage to public infrastructure (roads, bridges, stream bank stabilization, parks, wastewater, water and electric systems) estimated at $60 million This figure does not include insured public buildings or restoring stream channel Lyons is CIRSA’s largest claim ever

  44. 20 percent of housing stock affected 211 residential structures damaged in Town of Lyons: 43 mobile homes and 178 houses. Of houses, about 1/3 were flooded basements with 2/3 suffering greater levels of damage Concentrated heavily in the lower income population - high percentage of seniors, artists, musicians, working class, homeowners 145 previous residents who wish to return are still displaced Personal property damages in addition to structures

  45. Widespread business losses: Lyons is 100% independently-owned small businesses. All closed for 6 weeks due to lack of utilities – loss of sales and inventory About 5-10 businesses suffered flood damage, few of these were in the actual flood plain, so not insured Several businesses have closed Economic base of parks and Planet Bluegrass heavily impacted

  46. Initial recovery milestones – 6 months after the event • Local foundations have channeled over $1.5 million to residents and businesses • Mid-December – end of March community planning effort: Lyons Recovery Action Plan sets priorities for recovery Utilities restored with temporary systems within 6 – 10 weeks Schools relocated and Town Hall repaired by early December Temporary roads and culverts installed Temporary berms in river to protect against spring run-off Massive debris removal activities Large-scale effort by humanitarian organizations to assist homeowners mucking out and initiate repairs

  47. Financing flood recovery • Cannot self-insure against catastrophic loss. Of $60 million: • State of Colorado sliding scale relief on match of up to 22.5%. • New cash flow mechanism created by the State • Lyons voters approve $1 million FEMA Community Disaster Loan for operating expenses to offset TOL revenue declines • Additional grant resources – GoCo $1 million, etc.

  48. Lessons learned: What worked well • Well-trained emergency responders (Boulder County Sheriff, Lyons Fire District, Lyons Public Works Dept); sirens saved lives • Extraordinary community response/engagement • Committed Town Staff and community leadership • We were not alone: Partnerships with Boulder County, City of Longmont, State of Colorado (DOLA, Governor’s Office, OEM, legislative representatives), FEMA • Humanitarian and volunteer efforts • State goes above and beyond to help finance recovery in hardest hit communities like Lyons

  49. Lessons learned: Challenges • Navigating post-disaster bureaucracies (for government and affected residents) • Implementation capacity of a small town • Limitations of insurance for businesses and residents • Extremely complex technical issues • Building affordable replacement housing • Complications to access funding