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The original item was published from 10/9/2015 11:39:00 AM to 10/9/2015 11:41:54 AM.

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Posted on: October 9, 2015

[ARCHIVED] Flood Insurance and Hazard Areas

October 9, 2015 - As a result of the City of Midland’s exemplary floodplain management programs and services, Midland is rated by the Insurance Services Office, Inc. (ISO) Community Rating System (CRS) as a Class 5 community. For Midland residents, this means a discount of 25 percent over standard insurance rates when purchasing or renewing flood insurance policies for their properties. Midland has maintained this rating since 2008, thereby providing the lowest flood insurance rates in the state of Michigan, according to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

Per the NFIP, a home located within a special flood hazard area (SFHA) or floodplain has a 26 percent greater chance of being damaged by a flood over the life of a 30-year mortgage than by fire or other loss. Homeowner’s insurance will not cover flood damage; this is why flood insurance is mandatory for all federally-backed mortgages. Homes do not have to be in the floodplain to experience flooding.

Because the City participates in the NFIP, anyone who owns or rents property within Midland can buy flood insurance through a local insurance agent and receive the 25 percent rate reduction. There’s a 30-day waiting period for coverage to begin. Call 1-800-427-4661 with any questions regarding the NFIP, or call your licensed insurance agent for more on the City’s excellent flood rating and savings it will bring to you.

As a result of the catastrophic damages caused by Hurricane Sandy, Congress has enacted several insurance reform measures. These measures require the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the NFIP to create a reserve fund for payment of insurance claims resulting from floods, since the claims were previously paid from the national treasury. If you own a home in the floodplain that was constructed prior to the first Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) for your community (12/15/1983 for Midland), your insurance rates were subsidized in the past by FEMA. Under the new reforms, there could be a significant increase in flood insurance rates for many homes in Midland if subsidized rates are eliminated and full-risk premiums are calculated based upon the amount of risk of damage your home may have.

There are several flood hazard areas in Midland, with most flooding occurring from the Tittabawassee and Chippewa rivers, Sturgeon and Snake creeks, and Inman Drain. Contact Midland Planning & Community Development (837-3374) to find out if your home/ business is located in the SFHA (commonly referred to as the 100-year or 1 percent chance/yr. floodplain). Elevation certificates submitted to the city since 2007 are also available.

Keeping smaller drains, ditches, and streams debris-free can greatly improve the outflow of water run-off from low-lying areas and reduce the occurrence of ice jams. It’s a violation of City ordinance to dump materials into these waterways. There are many County and City drains and waterways that receive annual maintenance to ensure that man-made debris and naturally-occurring vegetation are removed. If you observe any waterways adjacent to your property that are filled with sediment, vegetation, or debris, call the Utilities Department (837-3500), and crews will be scheduled to clean these waterways.

The Planning Department has copies of all FEMA-issued Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs), which can be purchased directly from FEMA at 1-877-FEMA-MAP. When purchasing maps, please reference Midland’s community number: 260140.

Planning also has copies of all Letters of Map Amendments on properties and structures that have been removed from the SFHA. Contact Certified Floodplain Manager Brad Kaye about floodplain-related issues or concerns at 837-3379 or by e-mail to

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