This website provides information on the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) which is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), as well as an overview of the flood hazard mapping process underway in Allegany County, Maryland. The County’s Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) are being revised using the latest technologies and the most current data so residents, homeowners, business owners, and community officials may understand the local flood risk and keep people and property safe from floods.
What is the NFIP?
Congress established the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) due to escalating costs to taxpayers for flood disaster relief. The NFIP is based on the agreement that if a community practices sound floodplain management, the Federal Government will make flood insurance available to residents in that community. FEMA maps include the Special Flood Hazard Area, which is the area that has a 1% or greater chance of flooding in any given year. Development may take place within the Special Flood Hazard Area provided that it complies with local floodplain ordinances that meet NFIP criteria.
What is a FIRM?
When FEMA maps flood hazards in a community or county, two products are produced – a Flood Insurance Study (FIS) report and a Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM). An FIS is a narrative report of the community’s flood hazards that contains prior flooding information, descriptions of the flooding sources, information on flood protection measures, and a description of the hydrologic and hydraulic methods used in the study. A FIRM illustrates the extent of flood hazards in a community by depicting flood risk zones and the Special Flood Hazard Area, and is used with the FIS report to determine the floodplain development regulations that apply in each flood risk zone and who must buy flood insurance. FIRMs also depict other information including Base (1% annual chance) Flood Elevations (BFEs) or flood depths, floodways, and common physical features such as roads.
Why Are the Maps Being Updated?
The most significant change is that the new maps will have an updated photographic base map that will improve the accuracy of floodplain determinations compared to the prior vector street map. With this update we have produced a Digital Flood Insurance Rate Map that will be compatible with GIS (Geographic Information Systems). The improvements in spatial accuracy provided by the new base map, and the availability of electronic floodplain information should greatly enhance the ability to use the maps for planning, permitting, and insurance applications. The digital files will be available when these maps become effective.
Adoption Process in Brief
- Frequently Asked Questions
- MDE Website: DFIRM Outreach/Flood Risk Application
- FEMA Flood Maps
- Interactive Mapping – General: ArcGIS County Dashboard
- FEMA FIRMS Letter to Delegation 3/14/2019
- Letter from United States Senator Benjamin L. Cardin
CURRENT Local FLOOD STUDIES
FEMA Letters of Final Determination
- Allegany County Unincorporated (PDF)
- Barton (PDF)
- Cumberland (PDF)
- Frostburg (PDF)
- Lonaconing (PDF)
- Luke (PDF)
- Midland (PDF)
- Westernport (PDF)
- Summary of Mapping Action
PUBLIC NOTICE - Floodplain Management Ordinance Revision
Pursuant to Section §360-68 of the Code of Public Laws of Allegany County, Notice is hereby given that the Planning Commission of Allegany County will be accepting testimony on a Floodplain Management Ordinance Comprehensive Revision, at a public hearing on Wednesday, November 20, 2019 at 5:00 P.M. County staff requests a comprehensive revision to County Code Chapter 325 to maintain compliance with minimum standards of the National Flood Insurance Program.
The hearing will take place in Room 100 of the County Office Building, located at 701 Kelly Road, Cumberland MD. Interested parties are welcome to attend and may view the proposed Floodplain Management Ordinance at the County Web Page at alleganygov.org or by contacting Ms. Angie Patterson, Director of Planning and Growth, at 301-876-9509 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Planning Commission of Allegany County Mr. Steve K. MacGray, Chair