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Floodplain Management Services

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Flood Plain Management Services
People that live and work in the flood plain need to know about the flood hazard and the actions that they can take to reduce property damage and to prevent the loss of life caused by flooding. The Flood Plain Management Services (FPMS) Program was developed by the Corps of Engineers specifically to address this need. 

Authority, Objective, and Scope
The program's authority stems from Section 206 of the 1960 Flood Control Act (PL 86-645), as amended. Its objective is to foster public understanding of the options for dealing with flood hazards and to promote prudent use and management of the Nation's flood plains.

Land use adjustments based on proper planning and the employment of techniques for controlling and reducing flood damages provide a rational way to balance the advantages and disadvantages of human settlement on flood plains. These adjustments are the key to sound flood plain management.

Types of Assistance
The FPMS Program provides the full range of technical services and planning guidance that is needed to support effective flood plain management.

a. General Technical Services. The program develops or interprets site-specific data on obstructions to flood flows, flood formation and timing; flood depths or stages; flood-water velocities; and the extent, duration, and frequency of flooding. It also provides information on natural and cultural flood plain resources of note, and flood loss potentials before and after the use of flood plain management measures.

b. General Planning Guidance. On a larger scale, the program provides assistance and guidance in the form of "Special Studies" on all aspects of flood plain management planning including the possible impacts of off-flood plain land use changes on the physical, socio-economic, and environmental conditions of the flood plain.

This can range from helping a community identify present or future flood plain areas and related problems, to a broad assessment of which of the various remedial measures may be effectively used.

Some of the most common types of Special Studies include:

  • Flood Plain Delineation/Flood Hazard Evaluation Studies
  • Dam Break Analysis Studies
  • Hurricane Evacuation Studies
  • Flood Warning/Preparedness Studies
  • Regulatory Floodway Studies
  • Comprehensive Flood Plain Management Studies
  • Flood Damage Reduction Studies
  • Urbanization Impact Studies
  • Stormwater Management Studies
  • Flood Proofing Studies
  • Inventory of Flood Prone Structures.

The program also provides guidance and assistance for meeting standards of the National Flood Insurance Program and for conducting workshops and seminars on non-structural flood plain management measures, such as Flood Proofing.

c. Guides, Pamphlets, and Supporting Studies. The program enables studies to be conducted to improve methods and procedures for mitigating flood damages. Also, for preparing guides and pamphlets on flood proofing techniques, flood plain regulations, flood plain occupancy, natural flood plain resources, and other related aspects of flood plain management.

Charges for Assistance
Upon request, program services are provided to State, regional, and local governments, Indian Tribes, and other non-Federal public agencies without charge.

Program services also are offered to non-water resource Federal agencies and to the private sector on a 100% cost recovery basis. For most requests, payment is required before services are provided. A schedule of charges is used to recover the cost of services taking up to one day to provide. Letter requests or signed agreements are used to charge for those that take longer.

All requestors are encouraged to furnish available field survey data, maps, historical flood information and the like, to help reduce the cost of services.

How to Request Assistance
Agencies, governments, organizations, and individuals interested in flood-related informationor assistance should contact the nearest Corps office for further information concerning this Program.

Information that is readily available will be provided in response to a telephone request. A letter request is required for assistance that involves developing new data, or making a map, or preparing a report.