The Flood Mitigation Industry Association presses code and building officials to implement major changes to their floodplain ordinances to protect residents from the increased risk from disasters.
PITMAN, N.J. - March 4, 2021 - PRLog -- The Flood Mitigation Industry Association, a national non-profit dedicated to creating more flood resilient communities, aims for local officials to update their floodplain ordinances now, before it's too late.
"Now is the time to review your floodplain ordinances," said Tom Little, Certified Floodplain Manager, founding member and VP of the FMIA. "Each year, the number of devastating storms that cripple local economies is growing, and the standards our communities are built on simply are not enough to ensure resiliency."
Communities that take the initiative and place emphasis on floodplain management are rewarded with lower flood insurance costs, but more importantly, both residents and business owners are able to recover quicker and with more optimism if their local governments have the political will to enhance these regulations.
"Residents and business owners want more flood-resilient structures and to have the peace of mind that when there is a flood, their families won't be displaced and their businesses can reopen," said Sean O'Leary, Certified Floodplain Manager and FMIA member. "They want to trust the laws and ordinances in their communities were designed with them in mind."
Building standards in the floodplain are known to be set low, and there are many in the building industry who want to keep it that way to save money. "People don't realize there is constant political pressure to find a balance between lower construction costs and protecting from risks," adds Little. "The United States is great at recovery, putting the focus on paying later rather than now for prevention. But when is enough, enough?"
Consumer flood risk awareness is growing, and residents are now demanding action. Real-estate websites, such as Realtor.com, have integrated First Street Foundation's "Flood Factor" into its listings, alerting potential buyers to the possible flood risk for the property. The site now also includes FEMA flood maps for the area. This trend will continue and is just one step in fixing the years of neglect when preparing homes to be more flood resistant.
The FMIA is urging officials to take the time now to make real, effective changes to strengthen communities and keep pace with the growing focus on flood risk. Its website has a dedicated space that provides ordinance enhancement suggestions, as well as mitigation solutions that can protect homes and business. Some enhancements to consider are:
- Require floodplain inspections at point of sale for homes
- Increase freeboard requirements
- Require owners to conduct annual flood drills and maintenance on dry floodproofing designs
- Annual public outreach to educate the public on flood insurance and mitigation efforts
Visit www.floodmitigationindustry.org/ordinance-updates for a more complete list of suggestions and to download materials your community can use to ensure residents are well-protected from floods.
Flood Mitigation Industry Association
Since 2019, the FMIA has focused on helping homeowners understand the steps they can take now to protect their homes, lower flood insurance rates, and save money in the long run. This non-profit group of individuals and entrepreneurs from the private sector also strive to educate policy makers, highlighting the need for spending and mitigation now, rather than focusing on recovery efforts after a storm hits. To learn more, visit www.floodmitigationindustry.org.
VP and Board Member
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