Hearing to consider flood hazard zones, shoreline property guidelines
Gordy Euler, Community Planning
Vancouver, WA – Two public hearings, set for 10 a.m. July 24, could mark final steps in updating a flood hazard ordinance and shoreline master plan for properties near waterways in Clark County.
The Board of County Commissioners will hold the hearings in the sixth-floor hearing room of the Public Service Center, 1300 Franklin St. Both proposals have been in the works for many months and widely publicized among property owners.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has prepared flood insurance maps and a flood insurance study, scheduled to take effect Sept. 5. By then, the county needs to amend its ordinance and adopt FEMA maps for local property owners to remain eligible to purchase coverage through the National Flood Insurance Program.
Final maps indicate where mortgage lenders may require flood insurance and where floodplain development regulations will apply.
Meanwhile, Washington’s Shoreline Management Act requires counties and cities to update local shoreline master plans to guide development along large creeks, rivers and lakes.
Clark County changed its 1974 shoreline plan in November 2011. At this point, the Board is considering additional changes based on recent comments from the Washington State Department of Ecology.
The proposed shoreline plan also includes the new FEMA flood maps. In many places, shoreline jurisdiction and rules apply to land within an official floodplain.
Both proposals are online. Flood ordinance: www.clark.wa.gov/publicworks/flood/index.html Shoreline plan: www.cityofvancouver.us/shorelineupdate/default.html.