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Administration: Risk Management - Emergency Management - Business Continuity

EOP Basic Plan


The EOP provides the management structure, key responsibilities, emergency assignments, and general procedures to follow during and immediately after an emergency. The College has established the EOP to address the immediate requirements for a major disaster or emergency in which normal operations are interrupted and special measures must be taken to:

  • Protect and preserve human life, health and well-being;
  • Minimize damage to the natural environment;
  • Minimize loss, damage or disruption to the College’s facilities, resources and operations.

The EOP does not supersede or replace the procedures for safety, hazardous materials response or other procedures that are already in place at the College. The EOP supplements existing procedures with an ICS management structure, which provides for the immediate focus of management on response operations and the early transition to recovery operations:

  • Define Emergency Management authority, roles, functions, responsibilities;
  • Establish procedures for communication and information management (notification, public information, documentation);
  • Provide framework for decision-making (EOP activation, level of response, coordination of response);
  • Use college resources efficiently during emergency response;
  • Coordinate with other emergency response agencies;
  • Minimize disruption to operations.

The campus EOP consists of a Basic Plan, which provides fundamental background information for the EOP; Functional Annexes, which describe how key functions of the college will be accomplished during an emergency; Hazard-Specific Annexes, which describe individual natural and manmade threats, and methods to prepare for and respond to these threats. The EOP includes sections containing Appendices and Standard Operating Procedures.


CUNY has defined five levels of emergencies and the different types of emergencies at each level (see Functional Annex 4: Emergency Management/Direction, Control, and Coordination). Types and levels of emergencies cover a spectrum of severity and scale, from minor, involving response by only one person, with minimal- or no threat to human health, the environment, property, etc.; to major, having great potential for serious harm to human health and life, involving agencies outside of the college in their response, and having long-term consequences. The degree to which the EOP will be activated is based on the type and level of the emergency, and its potential to escalate to a more serious emergency.

Situation Overview

Hazard and threat analysis summary/Mitigation Overview. In 2010, the Campus Risk Management Plan was developed. Representatives from Public Safety, Campus Planning & Facilities, Environmental Health & Safety, Human Resources, the Business Office, the Information Technology division, and the Academic Division comprise the membership of the campus Risk Management Committee. Risk management is the primary driving force for several of these departments, and at least partly so for others.

Campus risks in all areas were identified by committee members, and the severity of these risks were assessed according to their potential impacts and likelihoods. Existing- and potential Mitigation Controls were listed by type (Oversight, Monitoring or Executive Controls; Policies and Procedures; Operational Controls; Education Awareness Training; and Audit Controls). Risks were re-assessed with existing Mitigation Controls in place, as well as with potential Mitigation Controls, and risks were ranked according to risk level (risk level = likelihood x impact) in order of severity on a campus-wide basis. Specific campus risks and their controls/responses are addressed in the section on Hazard-Specific Annexes.

The College updates the Risk Management Plan annually, and submits this updated Plan to CUNY. In addition to updating information on existing campus risks and their mitigation, the Plan also further addresses specific risk areas determined annually by CUNY (e.g. criminal activity, workplace violence, student mental health and wellness, natural disasters response, etc.).

Capability Assessment

Summaries of Lehman’s prevention, protection, response and recovery capabilities, including Lehman’s limitations on the basis of training, equipment and personnel, are given in the Functional Annexes, Hazard-Specific Annexes, and Appendix G, Campus Emergency Resources: Personnel and Equipment.

Prevention and Protection: mitigation controls for identified risks/threats have been employed wherever feasible. For example, for certain risks/threats, e.g. radioactive materials, oil/petroleum, a regulatory framework provides a system of multiple modes of continual monitoring and spill response procedures, reducing their risk.

Planning Assumptions

  • Emergencies can happen with little or no warning;
  • Emergencies can evolve from normal events and operations;
  • Emergency response is an expected part of certain job descriptions;
  • Activating the EOP and the ICS structure, will place individual personnel in roles that may be outside their normal roles at the College;
  • Campus Utilities (steam, electrical power, gas, cellphone-, landline- and computer communications, campus radio systems) may be interrupted as a result of an emergency;
  • When NYPD is called for emergency assistance, Public Safety personnel (and others) must manage the emergency until NYPD arrives;
  • Depending on the nature of the emergency, FDNY (fire) or NYPD (criminal activity) will become the Incident Commander upon arrival on campus, and Lehman personnel will support the FDNY or NYPD Incident Commander. Other aspects of an emergency may still need to be managed by Lehman College personnel even if FDNY and/or NYPD are on the scene;
  • Communication and exchange of accurate information will be one of the highest priority operations at the campus Emergency Operations Center (EOC).

Concept of Operations

See Functional Annex 4: Emergency Management/Direction, Control, and Coordination for a complete description of EOP activation, Emergency Management Team membership (Executive Policy and Incident Command groups), and Levels of Emergencies.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Lehman College and NYPD states that Public Safety will manage any emergency on the campus; however, the college may request assistance from NYPD. NYPD may not enter campus (with some exceptions) without the permission of Public Safety.

Organization and Assignment of Responsibilities

  • Lehman College will respond in-house to most types of emergencies for which the college has sufficient material resources and personnel. For the most serious emergency situations, the college will request assistance from NYPD, FDNY, and other public and private agencies:
  • NYPD: Public Safety will request assistance from NYPD during serious emergencies involving criminal activity.
  • FDNY: Public Safety investigates activated fire alarms to determine whether they are the result of an actual fire emergency. Once the determination has been made, Public Safety requests assistance from FDNY. See also Functional Annex 3: Firefighting.
  • NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP): DEP is the lead agency for chemical incidents occurring on city property (i.e., outside the campus perimeter).
  • Office of Emergency Management (OEM): The campus has been designated as an Evacuation Intake Center and Special Medical Needs Shelter when the Mayor activates NYC’s Coastal Storm Plan. When the CSP is activated, an order to evacuate is issued and the sheltering system is activated. A Lehman College official operates as the Incident Commander; OEM personnel will participate in operating the shelter (although not as Incident Commander); Lehman College personnel provide support functions. Specific procedures for sheltering activities are given in Functional Annex 5: Mass Care, Emergency Assistance, Housing, and Human Services.
  • CUNY: CUNY provides guidance on all major functions of the colleges in the system. During an emergency, colleges may call upon officials from the Central Offices to advise/assist. It is advisable to notify CUNY as soon as possible when an emergency situation with potential to escalate is discovered.
  • Private contractors: for certain types of emergencies (e.g large chemical or petroleum spill incidents; emergency repairs), Lehman College will bring in private contractors as part of the response. Specific Lehman College personnel will be the Incident Commander in such emergencies.

Direction, Control, and Coordination

The ICS structure defines the roles and responsibilities of theExecutive Policy Group, the Incident Command Group (Staff and General Staff); Operations, Planning, Logistics, and Finance Sections, and Resources, Units, and branches within these sections. For complete descriptions of these group- and individual roles and responsibilities, see Appendix B, ICS Roles and Responsibilities: Incident Command group and Appendix D: Lehman College Executive Policy Group Roles and Responsibilities. Descriptions of the interactions between the different groups are also included in these Appendices. A complete description of the framework for all direction, control, and coordination activities is given in Functional Annex 4: Emergency Management/Direction, Control, and Coordination.

Information Collection, Analysis and Dissemination

Intelligence data are collected, interpreted and disseminated among Executive Policy Group and Incident Command Group personnel. This information is used to:

  • Plan and adjust emergency operations;
  • Determine whether to declare an emergency;
  • Deploy resources appropriately;
  • Coordinate Planning, Logistics and Finance Sections Coordinate with agencies outside of Lehman College depending on the level of emergency (Levels 1-5);
  • Procure necessary supplies and equipment to respond to the emergency.


During an emergency, accurate and timely communications between the Executive Policy- and Incident Command Groups, emergency responders, as well as entities and the community outside of Lehman College will be of great importance. See Functional Annex 1: Communications, and Functional Annex 11: External Affairs for information on communications during an emergency.

Administration, Finance, and Logistics

Incident documentation: After-Action Report. Incidents will be documented to provide a historical record, review response actions, identify equipment shortcomings, adjust/develop new mitigation strategies, and recover costs. Recorded information will cover the entire incident, from discovery to end of response and return to pre-incident conditions. Written accounts by key persons involved in the incident, monitoring data, descriptions of response actions, etc. will be among the information collected for incidents. See Appendix G, Incident Briefing form (ICS Form 201).

Documentation of responses to Level 1 and 2 emergencies will be required at the discretion of the Incident Commander for the individual emergency. Some specific types of information may be required regardless of Level of the emergency. All phases of response to Level 3, 4, and 5 emergencies (See Functional Annex 4: Emergency Management/Direction, Control, and Coordination) must be documented.

Finance: Under certain circumstances (e.g. official federal declaration of a major disaster), reimbursement for costs related to expenditures incurred as a result of responding to an emergency (personnel, overtime, equipment, supplies, etc.) and damages (Lehman College is self-insured) is provided by the Federal Emergency Response Agency (FEMA). Reimbursement levels will be determined on a case-by-case basis. (Appendix H: Recovery of Costs Incurred during Emergencies).

Logistics: as described in the section in the EOP Basic Plan,Organization and Assignment of Responsibilities, Lehman College will respond to emergencies using its own resources in many cases. Summaries of Lehman’s prevention, protection, response and recovery capabilities, including Lehman’s limitations on the basis of training, equipment and personnel, are given in the Hazard-Specific Annexes as well as Appendix F, Campus Emergency Resources: Equipment and Personnel. Also see Functional Annex 6: Logistics Management and Resource Support.

In emergency situations for which there is advance warning (hurricanes, other severe weather events), the College can usually procure supplemental resources (equipment, etc.) and schedule support staff.

For identified hazards (hazardous materials, petroleum oil) resources are available near where these materials are stored to respond to releases (also required by FDNY, DEC, EPA). Also see Functional Annex 8: Oil and Hazardous Materials Response.

Plan Development and Maintenance

The Director of Public Safety has responsibility for coordinating the development and revision of the Basic Plan, Functional Annexes, Hazard-Specific Annexes, and implementation instructions to the appropriate persons.

Planning process: Risk Management processes, important precursors to emergency planning, are described for Lehman College in the section of the EOP Basic Plan, Situation Overview, Hazard and Threat Analysis Summary/Mitigation Overview. Through these processes, together with the issuance of Emergency Planning guidance documents from CUNY, the EOP was developed. The goal was to develop an EOP that conformed to established NIMS/ICS structure and principles.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recently (2014) developed its Guide for Developing High-Quality Emergency Operations Plans for Institutions of Higher Education, which is the primary guidance document for EOPs in a higher education setting. The concepts in this document are used throughout the Lehman College EOP.

Developing the EOP is a group process, involving representatives from a cross section of Lehman College that mirrors that of the Risk Management Committee: Public Safety, Student Affairs, Information Technology Division, Environmental Health & Safety, Buildings & Grounds, and Media Relations. Members of these departments/divisions attended L363 Multi-Hazard Emergency Planning for Higher Education training in September 2011 to build capacity to develop the EOP.

A draft of the campus EOP Basic Plan was developed by the directors of Public Safety and EH&S, and reviewed and edited by those who attended the L363 training. Functional- and Hazard-Specific Annexes that fall within the purview of a specific department are developed by representatives from that department.

Relationships between Lehman College and NYS/NYC agencies were reviewed, as well as any MOU’s with NYC agencies and incorporated into the EOP (Organization and Assignment of Responsibilities, above).

Review and revision process: an EOP is a “living” document, requiring continual updating. At minimum, specific names listed in the EOP will be updated whenever there is a change in assignment. At least once annually, the EOP will be reviewed by members of Public Safety, Campus Planning & Facilities, Buildings & Grounds, Information Technology, Student Affairs, and EH&S. Lessons learned from each after-incident review and training exercises will be incorporated into the EOP.