Flood risk meeting

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 2, 2010

Batesville residents stayed away in droves from Wednesday’s “Flood Risk Open House.”

The handful of Batesville residents who did attend the meeting at the Panola Emergency Operations Center learned about changes that could require flood insurance with annual premiums from $1,000 to $2,500 annually for many city homes.

 The changes would come with the Flood Map Modernization Program from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, designed to reduce excessive losses from repetitive claims, according to a statement from the Mississippi Flood Map Modernization Initiative. The map proposed for Batesville reclassifies large areas within the corporate limits of Batesville as “high-risk” for flooding.

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Finalization of the new Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) proposed for Batesville and Panola County is a lengthy process that began this fall and will likely be completed early next year. Wednesday’s public meeting opened the door for challenges to the map from citizens and municipalities, a process launched in early November by Batesville City Engineer Blake Mendrop.

“Do outreach to your citizens; they need to be prepared,” Mississippi Flood Plain Manager Al Goodman told a group of local public officials who met with representatives of the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), FEMA, and the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ).

 Maps may be viewed in following sections. Go back to home for each section.