- Associated Press - Thursday, June 29, 2017

MINOT, N.D. (AP) - A new flood-plain map proposed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency could raise insurance premiums for thousands of property owners in and around Minor, according to city leaders.

The preliminary map shows about 4,000 properties along the Souris River moving from preferred flood risk to high-risk flood zones. Flood protection planning and work in Minot has been ongoing since the June 2011 Souris River flood, which caused $700 million in damage in the city.

A grandfathering provision will keep insurance premiums from increasing faster than 18 percent annually for people who lock in their insurance before the new map takes effect next year, city engineer Lance Meyer told the Minot Daily News (https://bit.ly/2tpk3hV ).

“This is a significant impact to the city and our surrounding region,” Meyer said.

The city will have opportunity to appeal elements of the flood map if it believes FEMA’s new calculations are inaccurate.

“We want the most correct maps that we can for the benefit of our citizens,” Meyer said. “Even if that means a few tenths of a foot reduction in water surface elevations, that can mean a huge difference for our citizens when it comes to flood insurance.”

He said the first step will be to review data that’s been submitted.

Meyer advised residents to educate themselves on the matter and attend upcoming FEMA meetings.

“I would suggest that folks start talking to flood insurance agents, understand your risk and talk to them about getting flood insurance policies in place and in effect for these potential map changes we are going to have next year,” he said.

The first four phases of Minot’s flood protection project, which would protect 60 percent of the population, is expected to be completed by 2023 or 2024.

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Information from: Minot Daily News, https://www.minotdailynews.com

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