Houston area must quickly pick disaster commander
Perry orders a decision to be made ahead of hurricane season
— reported by the Houston Chronicle
Local county judges and mayors have less than a month to select a single operational commander to coordinate evacuations and emergency response during the Houston area’s next large-scale natural disaster, Gov. Rick Perry ordered Tuesday.
The order, a result of Perry’s efforts to improve upon last year’s massive and troubled evacuation ahead of Hurricane Rita, seeks to better coordinate command and communications among numerous governmental agencies with often competing interests.
The county judges and mayors within each of 24 “councils of government” in Texas must establish a command structure by April 18 and name an incident commander by April 20. (The local region, known as the Houston-Galveston Area Council, encompasses Harris and 12 surrounding counties.)
These deadlines were imposed because hurricane season begins soon thereafter, on June 1.