City floodplain practices result in 10 percent drop in insurance rates

City of Asheville property owners who pay flood insurance will see a drop in their premiums thanks to the City’s floodplain management and disaster reduction practices. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced in December that the City’s voluntary management activities exceeded the standards of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The result is not only a safer community but also a 10 percent reduction in flood insurance payments by property owners.

“This savings is a tangible result of the flood mitigation your community implements to protect lives and reduce property damage,” said Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration Associate Administrator David L. Miller in the announcement to the City.

The NFIP report cites several positive steps taken by the City of Asheville to reduce flood damage, including education and outreach projects, floodplain mapping, preservation of open space in flood prone areas and stormwater management. This is the first time the City has applied for the Community Rating System Credit.

“We’ve known for a while that stormwater is going to play a big part in planning for a safe and healthy city,” said Stormwater Services Manager McCray Coates. “So we hit the ground running on management practices that reduce the impact of heavy rain events. The current <a href=””>Lake Craig/Azalea Road</a> project is a great example of an infrastructure improvement that not only helps mitigate floodwaters but also makes the adjacent facilities easier to access.”

The City of Asheville maintains an online flood information page where users can find flood maps, safety info, background on stormwater concerns and even a tool to help determine if your house is in a floodplain.

“Our first concern is always making residents and property owners aware of flood issues and keeping the community safe,” said Development Services Director Shannon Tuch. “That this certification comes with a significant savings for residents paying flood insurance is a nice added value.”