The City of Valdez will be accepting written comments from community members about the proposed changes to submit to FEMA at the next Flood Risk Review Meeting to be held April 12th, 2016. The preliminary digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps are projected to be released by FEMA in June. Please send written comments to the email or mailing address below by April 11th, 2016. Written notification was sent by mail to property owners with parcels subject to change by FEMA's draft work maps. Please call City of Valdez, Floodplain Manager AnnMarie Lain with any questions at 907-834-3450.
City of Valdez
Certified Floodplain Manager : AnnMarie Lain
MAIL: PO BOX 307 | Valdez, AK 99686
Over the last several years FEMA has been working in an extensive effort to update the FEMA issued Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM). The regulatory FIRM identifies the Community’s flood zones, base flood elevations, and floodplain boundaries.
This map is used to determine where the purchase of flood insurance is required for properties with federally-backed mortgages and is used by Staff to determine areas of development requiring floodplain development permits.
The current effective regulatory maps that the City uses to determine Special Flood Hazard Areas were originally done in 1983 with limited quality data. FEMA has now published the draft work maps based on new studies.
The Community Development office is compiling written comments from the public to present to FEMA for the Riverine Flood Study Review Meeting. The Riverine Flood Study Review Meeting is scheduled for April 12th, 2016.
The FEMA Study Team will address comments submitted during the 30-day comment review period resulting from the Flood Risk Review (FRR) meeting. Once these comments are addressed, resolutions will be presented to the community. Following this, the next step will be to publish the Preliminary Digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps (DFIRMs) and to conduct a Consultation Coordination Officers (CCO)/Public Meeting. The CCO meeting will provide the community with an opportunity to ask questions about the updated maps and flood study and get an understanding of the path forward.
The following table illustrates project status and includes major milestones with dates:
Comment on Proposed Changes
Although the proposed changes have not been released by FEMA as preliminary data, staff feels it is important to give the public the chance to voice their opinions and/or concerns regarding how the data may affect them or to question data accuracy before the preliminary data is released.
If the currently effective FIRM shows your property outside the SFHA and the newer preliminary FIRM shows your property as being in the SFHA, you can appeal the information shown on the preliminary FIRM by providing a statement in writing to the Community Development office.
Please address all statements (opinions, concerns, appeals) to the City of Valdez, Floodplain Administrator, AnnMarie Lain. Statements should be sent before the FEMA flood study review meeting. This website will be updated once the flood study review meeting is scheduled.
MAIL PO Box 307, Valdez, AK 99686
IN PERSON City Hall, Community Development Office, 212 Chenega Ave.
Understanding the Proposed Changes
There are several ways in which new delineated flood zones can effect a property owner.
→ The flood insurance premium rates for a property that is shown outside the SFHA on the effective FIRM are lower than the rates for a structure inside the SFHA.
→ If a new FIRM becomes effective for your community and your structure is now in a SFHA and you have federally related financing for your property and have not already purchased a flood insurance policy, your lender is required by law to document the flood zone determination and require that you purchase flood insurance. A 30-day waiting period follows the purchase of a flood insurance policy before it goes into effect. There are exceptions to the 30-day waiting period for policies purchased in connection with the making, increasing, extending or renewing a loan or certain map changes. If you do not purchase the insurance within 45 days after being informed that flood insurance is required, the lender is required to force-place the insurance and charge you for the cost.
→ If you do not have federally related financing, insurance is still available to you. Please contact your insurance agent for more information, the purchase of flood insurance is a prudent means of protecting your financial interests.
View Proposed Changes on Web Map
Property owners are encouraged to be proactive in understanding the proposed FEMA FIRM map changes. View the map below to zoom and span to your parcel. Toggle the top left hand arrows to expand the legend. The area in light blue shows the current effective floodplain boundaries, the area in light red shows the proposed new floodplain boundaries.
You can also view the draft maps on the State of Alaska Risk Map website here: https://www.commerce.alaska.gov/web/dcra/PlanningLandManagement/RiskMAP/CityofValdezRiskMAPStudy.aspx