MONROE COUNTY, FL – Monroe County Emergency Management has created a revised Placard Reentry Program to ensure that all personnel who are essential to the recovery of the Florida Keys are able to quickly return following a mandatory hurricane evacuation. This program also ensures that those emergency workers returning early have a plan to be self-sufficient.
This revised program includes lessons learned from Hurricane Irma.
The Placard Reentry Program is run by Emergency Management and is available to agencies with representation at the Emergency Operations Center (EOC). These agencies can obtain early reentry placards for their employees from Monroe County Emergency Management.
New this year, businesses or organizations not represented within the EOC but believe they have an essential response mission and wish to apply for inclusion within the Second Tier of the Placard Program, may apply directly with Emergency Management.
The placard program enrollment period for 2018 is June 15 - July 31. Applications are available on the new Monroe County Emergency Management website at www.monroecountyem.com/placardprogram.
The applications will be reviewed by Emergency Management.
If approved: You will be contacted within 21 days of the application submission if your business/organization's request is approved – and you will be given instructions about how to get your placards.
If not approved: You will receive an email within 21 days of the application submission if your business/organization's request is not approved. The email will include the reasons and provide opportunity to address those issues and resubmit the application.
MONROE EMERGENCY RESERVE CORPS
There also is one other way for Monroe County citizens to obtain early reentry into the Keys following a mandatory evacuation from a hurricane that results in major damage and public safety issues. It is by becoming a volunteer of the new Monroe Emergency Reserve Corps.
To become a member of the reserve corps, citizens must go through a Community Emergency Response Training program (CERT) that teaches self-sufficiency and other skills necessary during a disaster. To volunteer for this program, go to www.monroecounty-fl.gov/volunteermonroe. This program is run by Monroe County Emergency Management.
The first training for CERT instructors is June 16 and 17. The class is full, with 40 people signed up. Once the instructors receive their certification, they will begin setting up CERT training for volunteers in locations throughout the Keys. That information will be forthcoming.
REENTRY STICKERS FOR RESIDENTS/BUSINESS OWNERS
Now is the time for all residents and business owners of Monroe County who don’t already have a Reentry Windshield Sticker to obtain one for their vehicle. Do not wait until a storm is approaching. (No stickers will be given out once a state of emergency is declared in Monroe County, which occurs several days before a storm is forecast to strike).
These stickers will be needed in the event that checkpoints are required to assure safe re-entry into the Keys following a destructive storm that causes public safety issues.
Beginning this hurricane season, and in order to make reentry smoother for everyone, residents no longer will be able to pass through reentry checkpoints without a valid reentry sticker. Those who don’t obtain them in advance will be delayed getting back into the Keys. They will be detoured to a location out of the County to obtain a reentry sticker.
The stickers program is run by the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office. These stickers are available at the Sheriff’s Office headquarters and substations, as well as some of the Department of Motor Vehicle offices in the Keys. For more information and locations to obtain stickers, go to www.monroecountyem.com/reentrystickers.