May 23, 2005
For immediate release
For more information, contact:
Bonnie J. Prigge or Lesley Bennish, (573) 265-2993
First in a series
THINKING ABOUT A CONSTRUCTION PROJECT IN PHELPS COUNTY?
YOU MAY NEED A FLOODPLAIN PERMIT
PHELPS COUNTYPhelps County does not have a building codes program that requires a
permit. However, you may need a floodplain permit, if you are planning construction or substantial
improvements in a floodplain within Phelps County, said Presiding Commissioner Randy Verkamp.
Because Phelps County participates in the National Flood Insurance Program, we must have
process that certifies compliance with FEMA and NFIP regulations, Verkamp explained. This
doesnt prevent you from building in a floodplain, however, you may need to follow certain design
standards that would minimize damage in the event of a flood.
Meramec Regional Planning Commission administers the countys floodplain management
program. If you are planning to build a home or add an addition, you need to determine if you are in
a floodplain, and we can help you do that, said Lesley Bennish, a community development specialist
with MRPC. If your lending institution is requiring you to purchase flood insurance, that is a
good indication that you may be in an area susceptible to flooding, and you most definately need to
contact us, Bennish added. The sooner you find out, the better, she added.
By using FEMA floodplain maps, MRPC will determine whether a floodplain permit is
needed. If a permit is needed, the property owner will need to fill out an application, and the administrator will provide detailed specifications that would need to be followed for construction in the
floodplain. For example, the lowest floor of the planned project may need to be elevated or you may
have to forego a basement, because no basements are allowed in a floodplain, Bennish said. Once
the administrator has provided the specification information, construction can begin. The administrator
will then follow up by requiring an elevation certificate.
That documents the elevation of the lowest floor of the structure and certifies compliance
with federal regulations, Bennish explained. Our goal is to allow you to build in a floodplain, if that is your desire, but to do so in such away that the threat to lives and property are minimized, should flooding occur, said Verkamp.
He encouraged residents to contact MRPC with any questions, especially residents that are planning summer building projects.
For more information on floodplain regulations in Phelps County, persons should contact
Bennish at MRPC at (573) 265-2993 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.