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Public Participation in Natural Hazard Mitigation Policy Formation: Challenges for Comprehensive Planning

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Democratic theory holds that active participation in governmental planning and decision making is critical to furthering the public interest. As a result, public participation in urban planning in the US is arguably the most extensive and intensive in the world. Required by federal, state and local laws, citizen involvement is a staple of local plan making. However, as this paper shows, citizen interest in participating in the formulation of hazard mitigation policies in comprehensive plans is low, despite mounting evidence of perils to life and property from floods, hurricanes and earthquakes. Using evidence from case studies in Florida and Washington, the causes of disinterest are dissected and ways to increase public input to hazard mitigation policies in local comprehensive plans are recommended.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of City and Regional Planning, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3140, USA. [email protected] Department of Landscape Architecture and Planning, Texas A & M University, College Station, TX 77843, USA

Publication date: September 1, 2003

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