FEMA – January 2023 Madison County – Open Houses

Madison County Residents Invited to Flood Map Open Houses

Community residents can join two in-person meetings to review new flood maps with experts. They can also learn how to address their future flood risk and help protect life and property.

MADISON COUNTY, IL –  Local, state and federal officials are working to reduce the impacts of severe weather and natural disasters. On January 18 and 19, 2023, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will hold two in-person Open House meetings to introduce Madison County residents to their updated flood maps.

FEMA, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, and Madison County community officials invite residents to join them at either Open House for any length of time.  Residents can also see preliminary versions of the Flood Insurance Study (FIS) report and the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) here.

WHAT:      IN PERSON Open House to Review New Flood Maps

WHEN:     Jan. 18, 2023,  5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

WHERE:  Granite City Township Hall
2060 Delmar Avenue, Granite City, IL 62040

WHAT:     IN PERSON Open House to review New Flood Maps

WHEN:    Jan. 19, 2023,  5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

WHERE:  Wood River Public Library
326 E. Ferguson Avenue, Wood River, IL 62095

There is no formal presentation at these events.  Experts at the Open Houses will help residents understand flood risk and flood insurance.  They can also explain floodplain development regulations and the mapping process.  Residents can meet with experts one-on-one to look at their own addresses on the new maps.  They will learn about their specific risk.  They will also learn ways to help prevent flood loss.

Once in effect, the maps will inform flood insurance rates and local floodplain management rules adopted under the Nation Flood Insurance Program.  FEMA urges public officials to use the maps to help with planning and to prepare communities to quickly respond to and recover from future events.

Property owners, realtors, lenders and insurance agents will benefit from this chance to learn more about flood risk and hazard mitigation in Madison County.

For media questions, reach out to the FEMA Region 5 News Desk at [email protected].  For Open House questions, reach out to our outreach lead Abby Monroe.

Madison County’s Flood Maps are Being Updated.  Do You Know Your Flood Risk?  – Attend an upcoming open House to Learn More.  If you cannot attend an Open House, reach out to the FEMA Flood Mapping and Insurance eXchange (FMIX) at (877) 336-2627, via email, or via chat.  A map specialist can help answer your questions.  You can also contact the Illinois DNR at (217) 782-6302.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What changes will we see on the new Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM)?

Some buildings may be included in the high-risk area for the first time.  This area is known as the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA).  However, some buildings may be removed from the SFHA.

  • If the building is currently mapped in an SFHA, but is outside the SFHA on the new FIRM, flood insurance is no longer federally required.  Flood Insurance is still recommended for renters and homeowners outside the SFHA.
  • Mortgage companies or lenders may still require you to buy flood insurance.

Can I view my home on the new preliminary FIRM before the Open House?

Yes.  You can view an address on the preliminary map at https://msc.fema.gov/fmcv.  Call the FEMA Mapping and Insurance eXchange (FMIX) at (877) 336-2627 to get details about your location.  You can also contact the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (DNR) at 217-782-6302.

Who should attend the Flood Risk Open House?

Everyone should attend a Flood Risk Open House, especially if:

  • Your property is currently mapped within an SFHA.
  • Your property is newly mapped within an SFHA.
  • You currently have flood insurance.
  • You are not sure or want to learn more.

What happens at the Flood Risk Open House?

Property owners can meet one-on-one with FEMA representatives.  They will explain the preliminary FIRM updates.  They can also answer questions about flood insurance.

Do I have to stay at the Open House for the entire time?

No.  You can drop in any time between the hours listed.  Plan to spend about an hour at the Open House to get the details you need.  The Open House is set up so you can move between information stations.  You may choose which stations or experts to visit.

What should a homeowner bring to the Flood Risk Open House?

Bring an address to learn more about that property’s flood risk.  A current flood insurance policy or elevation certificate may provide more specific details about your flood insurance options.

Do I have to buy flood insurance?

Flood insurance rates are determined in part by the current effective FIRM.

  • If the new preliminary FIRM shows your property in a high-risk flood area, and you have a mortgage through a government-backed lender:
  1. You must buy flood insurance.
  2. This happens once the preliminary FIRM goes into effect. There is time – updated maps are planned to go into effect in late 2023.
  3. Wherever it rains, it can flood.  Buying flood insurance is good idea for property owners and renters even in low-risk areas.

Can I change the new maps?

You can formally appeal information that is on the new maps.  The Open House is a great place to learn more about the appeal process.  This includes how to file an appeal or comment.  If you cannot attend the Open House, the DNR are great places to find out more about comments or appeals.  You can learn more about the process here.