In 1968, the U.S.
Congress passed the National Flood Insurance Act, which established the
National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The NFIP was broadened and modified
with the passage of the Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973 which required
structures built in a 100-year floodplain to carry flood insurance coverage
as a condition for receiving federal aid or federally insured loans. The
Flood Insurance Reform Act of 1994 fine-tuned many aspects of the NFIP
through the creation of the Community Rating System (CRS).
The NFIP is a federal
program administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA),
and makes Federally-backed flood insurance available in communities that
adopt and enforce floodplain management ordinances to help reduce future
flood losses. The NFIP transfers costs of private property flood losses
from tax payers to floodplain property owners through flood insurance
premiums, provides financial aid to flood victims, encourages development
away from flood-prone areas, and requires new and substantially improved
structures to be constructed in a way that minimizes or prevents flood
|COMMUNITY RATING SYSTEM (CRS) (top)|
The NFIP/CRS was implemented in 1990 as a program for recognizing and encouraging community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum NFIP standards. The National Flood Insurance Reform Act of 1994 codified the CRS in the NFIP. Under the CRS, flood insurance premium rates are adjusted to reflect the reduced flood risk resulting from community activities that meet the three goals of the CRS: (1) reduce flood losses; (2) facilitate accurate insurance rating; and (3) promote the awareness of flood insurance. The CRS recognizes 18 creditable activities, organized under four categories: Public Information, Mapping and Regulations, Flood Damage Reduction, and Flood Preparedness. Accumulation of credit points results in the assignment of a CRS classification. There are a total of ten CRS classes. Class 1 requires the most credit points and gives the largest insurance premium reduction, while a community rated Class 10 receives no reduction in insurance premiums. Monterey County has been a voluntary participant in the CRS since October 1, 1991, and the County was upgraded to Class 5 on May 1, 2007. With the improved rating, buildings located in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) receive a 25% discount for new or renewed NFIP policies. Buildings located outside the SFHA receive a 10% premium discount. The Class 5 rating provides annual savings of over $500,000 for Monterey County flood insurance policy holders.
|DRAINAGE SYSTEM MAINTENANCE (top)|
MCWRA operates and
maintains drainage facilities in fourteen drainage maintenance zones and
districts located throughout Monterey County. The drainage improvements
consist of approximately fifty-seven miles of improved drainage way, eight
pump stations, nine miles of river levees, two large earthen dams and
numerous culverts, tide gates and concrete structures. Routine maintenance
consists of ongoing removal of debris in drainage channels and pump stations,
access roadway maintenance, and guardrail and fence maintenance, spraying
for vegetation control, baiting for rodent control, sediment removal in
drainage ways, timely repair of eroded banks, mechanical equipment and
damaged facilities and ongoing preventive maintenance program. The maintenance
program is administered by the MCWRA Chief Engineer of Operations and
Maintenance, and consists of a full time ten member crew dedicated to
the operation and maintenance of these facilities. Inspection of Agency
facilities is performed on a regular schedule, and on a daily basis during
storms. The Agency has heavy equipment to perform all of the debris and
sediment removal, erosion repair work and access roadway maintenance.
|FLOOD INSURANCE (top)|
The Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973 and the National Flood Insurance Reform Act of 1994 mandate the purchase of flood insurance as a condition of Federal or Federally related financial assistance for acquisition and/or construction of buildings in the 100-year floodplain of any community participating in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The purchase of flood insurance on a voluntary basis is prudent even outside the 100-year floodplain. There is normally a 30-day waiting period before flood insurance goes into effect. The Acts prohibit Federal agency lenders from making, guaranteeing, or purchasing a loan secured by improved real estate or mobile home(s) in a 100-year floodplain, unless flood insurance has been purchased, and is maintained during the term of the loan. Federally regulated or insured lending institutions are required in all cases to notify the borrower when the building being used to secure a loan is in a 100-year floodplain. Contact Monterey County Water Resources Agency at 755-4860 in order to determine if your property is located within the 100-year floodplain in unincorporated Monterey County. The fee for the formal report is $84.
|FLOOD SAFETY (Storm Preparedness) (top)|
First aid kit and essential medicines.
areas that are subject to sudden flooding.
|FLOOD WARNING SYSTEM (top)|
In the late 1970's,
Monterey County installed the first ALERT (Automated-Local-Evaluation-in-Real-Time)
flood warning system. The System consists of self-reporting remote sensors,
located throughout the County, that transmit rain and stream level data
via radio to base station computers at County, State, and Federal offices,
including the Monterey County Water Resources Agency (MCWRA) and the Monterey
County Office of Emergency Services. Additionally ALERT data is sent through
an Internet Protocol Concentrator to redundant computer databases that
allow reliable access via the internet. This real time data allows for
the earliest possible flood warnings and river flow forecasts.
|FLOODPLAIN DEVELOPMENT STANDARDS (top)|
Regulations for floodplains in Monterey County are contained in Chapter 16.16 of Monterey County Code. Chapter 21.64 includes additional floodplain regulations for land use in the Carmel Valley floodplain. Development within the 100-year floodplain or within 200 feet of the riverbank may require a Use Permit from the Monterey County Planning and Building Inspection Department. As defined in County Code, development means any man-made change to improved or unimproved real estate, including but not limited to buildings or other structures, mining, dredging, filling, grading, paving, excavation, or drilling operations. Contact Code Enforcement through the Building Department at (831) 755-5027, to report illegal floodplain development. There are more restrictive regulations for development within the FEMA-defined floodway. Please contact Agency staff for additional information.
|PROPERTY PROTECTION MEASURES (top)|
To protect your property
from flood damage, measures such as retrofitting, grading, and/or correcting
local drainage problems may be necessary. Such retrofitting techniques
include: elevation of the home, relocating the home to higher ground,
constructing floodwalls or berms, floodproofing, and protecting utilities.
In emergency situations, moving furniture or sandbagging may be appropriate.
Additional information on flood-fighting methods, erosion control techniques,
and a list of civil engineers and contractors available for consultation
and construction of preventative measures is available at the Agency.
|POSSIBLE PROPERTY PROTECTION ACTIVITIES ON THE PART OF THE PROPERTY OWNER (top)|
Construct or modify retaining walls with proper drainage.
B. Construct berms to divert water flows.
C. Install debris fences or traps.
D. Install yard inlets to convey runoff to the street.
E. Construct on-site detention basins
F. Improve headwalls for water conveyance.
G. Floodproof retaining walls.
H. Floodproof entrances.
I. Add sump pump to drainage systems.
J. Construct terrace drain and plant slope to reduce erosion.
K. Plant slopes to reduce erosion and water flows.
L. Improve on-site grading and add french-drain.
M. Convert flood prone living space and replace with new story.
N. Elevate the lowest floor a minimum of 1 foot above the base flood elevation (residential).
O. Elevate the lowest floor a minimum of to the base flood elevation (non-residential).
P. Waterproof lower level.
Q. Extend the walls of the house upward and raise the lowest floor.
Sandbag Distribution and Distribution Information (top)
|SUBSTANTIAL IMPROVEMENT/DAMAGE (top)|
If an existing building within the 100-year floodplain is substantially improved/damaged, it must be brought up to current County floodplain management standards. "Substantial Improvement" means any reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition, or other improvement to a structure, the total cost of which equals or exceeds 50% of the market value of the structure before the start of construction of the improvement. "Substantial Damage" means damage of any origin sustained by a structure whereby the cost of restoring the structure to its before-damaged condition would equal or exceed 50% of the market value of the structure before damage occurred.