Letter of final determination on Pearl River County flood maps issued

Published 5:18 pm Monday, December 24, 2007

Pearl River County and its incorporated communities are one step closer to adopting new base flood elevations because the Federal Emergency Management Agency recently issued a Letter of Final Determination affirming elevations of the new preliminary flood maps.

The new maps become effective June 3, 2008, which is six months after the date of the letter. During the next six months, community officials will revise or update their local flood damage prevention ordinances in order to adopt the new base flood elevations. These actions will enable the communities to continue to be eligible for coverage through the National Flood Insurance Program.

The entire state of Mississippi is a mapped flood zone. Only those zones beginning with the letters A or V (Pearl River County does not have any V zones) require the purchase of flood insurance for federally backed loans. Community officials encourage people to view the preliminary maps at http://geology.deq.ms.gov/floodmaps/status.aspx?county=Pearl%20River to see their flood zone status.

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Property owners are encouraged to consider purchasing flood insurance prior to the effective date of the digital flood insurance rate maps (June 3, 2008) because there may be other options for insurance rating that may be more cost effective. They are encouraged to purchase flood insurance regardless of their zone because floods don’t always follow map lines and the low risk policy is inexpensive. Property owners should consult their property and casualty insurance agent for specific guidance.

A flood insurance policy normally has a 30-day waiting period, so it may benefit a property or business owner to act as soon as possible.

For more information about flood insurance, visit: www.floodsmart.gov.