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Wagner & Eustace call on State to Update Flood Maps as FEMA Prepares to Release New Federal Maps

Bergen Lawmakers Have Been Pushing Legislation to Require More Updated Maps

In advance of the imminent release of new Advisory Base Flood Elevation maps by FEMA, Assemblywoman Connie Wagner and Assemblyman Tim Eustace called on the state to update all Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) flood hazard area maps to better protect homes and businesses from future storms.

In mid-October, the Assembly Environment and Solid Waste Committee released a bill (A3262) sponsored by Wagner and Eustace with bi-partisan support. The measure is designed to help protect the public from flooding and facilitate smart development by requiring the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to quickly evaluate any newly released FEMA floodway delineations in order to allow permit applicants to apply for a permit using the federal floodway delineation when it is at least as protective as the DEP’s delineation.

 “As New Jersey rebuilds from the destruction of Hurricane Sandy it is absolutely necessary that we rebuild in a smarter fashion to create better protection from future storms,” said Wagner. “Unfortunately, many parts of New Jersey will continue to be without updated maps and ‘building smart’ is not an option for them due to 30 year old flood maps.”

“We have to bring the shore and other devastated regions, including Little Ferry and Moonachie, back to the level they were at prior to the storm,” said Eustace. “Residents in District 38 and residents of other heavily flooded areas deserve the protection of updated maps as well. The increasing intensity and frequency of storms are becoming a statewide problem and they deserve a statewide solution.”

 

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Hedy Grant December 17, 2012 at 03:16 PM
At New Milford's Nov. 26, 2012 council meeting, I presented - and the New Milford Council unanimously passed - a resolution supporting the Wagner-Eustace bill. Much has changed in the thirty years since the last flood hazard area maps were drafted. The old maps do not accurately reflect current conditions or provide accurate data yet they continue to be used by developers often to the detriment of affected areas. In order to better protect flood-prone communities, the DEP must update its flood hazard area maps to reflect current conditions and provide accurate information. Decisions based on flawed data are flawed.
Ulises December 18, 2012 at 03:13 AM
Thank you Councilwoman Grant, and the rest of the council members, for supporting a resolution favoring this bill. Hopefully, the new maps will stop development along our waterways.

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