The hazard mitigation strategy shall address each jurisdiction’s participation in the NFIP and continued compliance with NFIP requirements, as appropriate.
44 CFR §201.6(c)(3)(ii)
As a participant in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), a community develops capabilities for conducting flood mitigation activities. The local mitigation plan must describe each jurisdiction’s participation in the NFIP. Participating communities must describe their continued compliance with NFIP requirements. The mitigation plan must do more than simply state that the community will continue to comply with the NFIP. Each jurisdiction must describe its floodplain management program and how it will continue to comply with the NFIP requirements. The local floodplain administrator is often the primary source for this information. See Worksheet 4.3 for important considerations when describing authorities and policies related to the NFIP and identifying actions to improve the existing program.
Jurisdictions where FEMA has issued a floodplain map but are currently not participating in the NFIP may meet this requirement by describing the reasons why the community does not participate.
Plan updates must meet the same requirements and document any change in floodplain management programs.
The previous section (Types of Capabilities) identified four primary types of capabilities to achieve long-term risk reduction through mitigation planning: planning and regulatory, administrative and technical, financial and education and outreach. We use those same four types of capabilities (below) in describing how participation in the NFIP relates to a community’s capability to mitigate hazards.
Planning and Regulatory
The plan may describe the community’s adoption and enforcement of floodplain management regulations, including when the community joined the NFIP, when the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) became effective, and whether the floodplain ordinance meets or exceeds minimum requirements. You may choose to provide a summary of the community’s compliance history, including the results from the most recent Community Assistance Visit (CAV). If applicable, you may include activities that contributed to the communities’ class rankings in the Community Rating System (CRS).
Mecklenburg County, NC
Mecklenburg County was identified as a best practice because its 2009 plan includes a combination of clear tables and text to summarize both the county’s and its relevant jurisdictions’ participation in the NFIP. The table below is excerpted from the plan and shows each jurisdiction’s date of entry, coverage and other details within the NFIP.
Mecklenburg County is particularly progressive in its floodplain mapping programs often surpassing FEMA’s minimum standards by projecting future floodplains based on estimated future growth. The table below is just a sample of some of the progressive measures Mecklenburg County has taken.
National Flood Insurance Program
Participation in the NFIP is based on an agreement between communities and FEMA. The NFIP has three basic components:
- Floodplain mapping. NFIP participation requires community adoption of flood hazard maps to provide the data needed to administer floodplain management programs and to actuarially rate new construction for flood insurance.
- Floodplain management. The NFIP requires communities to adopt and enforce minimum federal floodplain management regulations that help mitigate the effects of flooding on new and improved structures. States and communities may have more restrictive elements in their floodplain ordinances to provide additional safety measures.
- Flood insurance. Community participation in the NFIP enables property owners to purchase insurance as a protection against flood losses in exchange for community floodplain management regulations that reduce future flood damages.
Administrative and Technical
The planning team may identify the staff dedicated to managing the NFIP in the community, such as a dedicated floodplain administrator or staff for which the NFIP is a secondary duty. Also, the plan may describe the tasks completed by staff in support of the NFIP, such as permit reviews and building inspections.
The plan may include a summary of your community’s flood insurance coverage, number of policies, and claims history, including repetitive loss properties. Repetitive loss properties are NFIP insured structures that have been repetitively damaged by flooding. A good approach is to include the types and numbers of repetitive loss properties in the community and maps showing concentrations of repetitive loss properties. The planning team may contact the State NFIP Coordinator or the State Hazard Mitigation Officer (SHMO) for this information.
Mecklenburg County, NC
Mecklenburg County’s Plan was chosen as a best practice because it also maps properties that were acquired using the county’s Buyout Program that is funded using federal, state and local monies. The map of the plan is shown below.
Education and outreach
Participation in the NFIP could also be described through any education or outreach activities that relate to the NFIP, such as flood safe building initiatives or outreach on the availability of flood insurance.
The plan does not need to include specific actions in the mitigation strategy for NFIP compliance, although areas of improvement, if identified, can become future mitigation actions. Communities are encouraged to complete additional activities that go above and beyond the minimum requirements of NFIP participation, as described in the CRS Coordinator’s Manual (FIA-15/2007).