Alachua County to host public meetings on Flood Insurance Rate Maps update

Press release from Alachua County

ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla. – Periodically, the Department of Homeland Security provides funding to FEMA to reissue the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) and execute new detailed studies in selected areas. The FIRM is used by insurance brokers and housing lenders to determine the risk of flooding and to set the premium for flood insurance. New FIRM maps are being developed for Alachua County and surrounding communities. The Santa Fe Watershed Flood Risk Project covering most of the North and Northwestern portion of the County is available for public review. FEMA has started a public comment and appeals period that ends on April 30, 2023. 

Three information meetings are being held on April 18, April 24, and April 25, 2023, at Alachua County Public Works Ready Room (5620 N.W. 120th Lane, Gainesville) from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Those wishing to appeal or comment about the FIRM maps can obtain information on how to do so at this meeting.

Those who would like to look up their property and view the current FIRM maps and the proposed changes should visit the Santa Fe Watershed (arcgis.com).

Watch a video tutorial for using the maps.

The adoption of the new Risk Map FIRM for the Santa Fe basin is not anticipated until the fall of 2023. Until the County Commission adopts them, the current FIRM, dated June 16, 2006, is still in effect (thus, it is important to maintain current insurance coverage).

Learn more about the Suwannee River Water Management District by participating in this virtual tour.

  • Increasing solid surface areas (widened and new roads, parking lots and rooftops in place of natural landscape) necessitates the need for retention ponds and manmade wetlands. Retrofitting may be required.

  • After homeowner insurance doubled this year, this will be used to mandate additional flood insurance. I would encourage everyone to look up their property and provide comment. Areas that have never flooded are now considered to be in flood zones.

  • Perhaps Alachua County should stop allowing for the destruction of our forest and farmland to build houses and apartments that contribute to the flooding issues.

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