At the May 21, 2013, meeting of the Board of Supervisors, the Internal Audit Department reported on one department’s progress with its business continuity plan. (Business continuity plans show the ways in which a department will be able to continue operating after a disaster.)
“Incomplete business continuity plans place this County at-risk of not being able to function after a catastrophe. Earthquakes, fires, floods, riots, hackers, and all sorts of other calamities are very real possibilities,” Supervisor Todd Spitzer said. “Our agencies and departments must prepare their business continuity plans to keep this County functioning for our 3,000,000 residents.”
Supervisor Spitzer asked for the Internal Audit Department to report on the status of the business continuity plans for the County’s 23 departments and agencies. The May 21 report showed the plans just over half-completed. At Supervisor Spitzer’s impetus, the County Executive Office then set out a timeline with key milestones to ensure County agencies and departments complete their business continuity plans by August 26.
As of July 1, the Assessor, the Internal Audit Department, and John Wayne Airport had their business continuity plans fully completed. Child Support Services, the Clerk of the Board, the Clerk-Recorder, County Counsel, the County Executive Office, the Health Care Agency, OC Public Works, and the Treasurer-Tax Collector were all more than 90% complete. On average, County agencies and departments had more than 70% of their plans completed.
“It is critical that these plans be completed, and I applaud the agencies and departments that have nearly completed their plans,” Supervisor Spitzer said. “I am pleased that other agencies have made significant progress, and much work continues to be done in order to bring the entire County to completion.”
The aftermath of the events of 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina demonstrated the importance of being able to resume internal business operations while other county services recover. Backup computer sites when primary sites are not operational, business recovery centers for displaced county employees, and working locations are just some of the necessary factors to ensure business continuity when disaster strikes.