Contact Us
Make My Homepage

New Maps Put More NJ Homes in Flood Zones

New Jersey’s adoption of expanded flood maps in the wake of Superstorm Sandy has put more than 33,000 additional residential buildings in flood zones, a nearly 15 percent increase.

Flooding
Christopher Furlong, Getty Images

The disaster recovery plan announced this week by the Christie administration shows nearly 268,000 residential structures now falling within New Jersey’s floodplain and subject to its building guidelines. That’s up from just over 234,000 before the maps were redrawn.

Within the floodplain, owners of homes considered to have been “substantially damaged” by Superstorm Sandy must rebuild according to the maps’ new elevation guidelines. In many cases this means having to raise their houses.

Houses where repair costs exceed 50 percent of the structure’s pre-disaster value are deemed “substantially damaged.” In its recovery plan, the state puts the number in that category at more than 18,000 but says it expects the figure to rise significantly as final reports come in.

New Jersey is receiving $5.4 billion from the federal government to meet recovery needs not covered by other federal programs or private insurance. In announcing Tuesday a plan for using the first allotment of $1.8 billion, Gov. Chris Christie included a program to provide up to $150,000 to owners of primary residences for reconstruction, with priority going to people of low to moderate income whose houses received substantial damage.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency had been working on new flood maps for New Jersey for two years when Sandy hit. Its revised maps showed the flooding risk in New Jersey to be much greater than was projected when the old maps came out in the 1980s.

In January, Gov. Chris Christie announced the state was immediately adopting FEMA’s revisions as New Jersey’s standards. He said it didn’t make sense to use old maps to guide New Jersey’s rebuilding or wait for FEMA to formally adopt its standards, a process expected to take 18 to 24 months.

Homes that don’t face mandatory elevation under the maps still face pressure to do so because of expected major increases in insurance premiums on properties that don’t follow the federal guidelines.

According to data in the state recovery plan, nearly 38,000 primary residences and 9,300 rental units received “severe” or “major” damage from Sandy.

Under federal guidelines, a severely damaged home is defined as having more than $28,800 in damage or more than four feet of flooding on the first floor. Damage ranging from $8,000 to $28,799 is defined as “major.”

 

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

Best of the Web


Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your points and personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account with your Facebook account, just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing profile and VIP program points. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to http://nj1015.com using your Facebook account.

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

Register on New Jersey 101.5 quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!

Not a Member? Sign Up Here.

Sign up for an account to comment, share your thoughts, and earn points to get great prizes.

Register on New Jersey 101.5 quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!