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AREA HOMES TO BE ELEVATED FOR FLOODS
July 08, 2008
(SNOHOMISH, WA) -- Four Snohomish area homes will be elevated this fall above their current foundations to withstand future flood events. The four properties to be elevated have filed more than $650,000 in National Flood Insurance Program claims since 1990.
Homeowners are only required to match 25% of the cost involved thanks to federal funding from FEMA, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
The Snohomish County council must approve the grant money but that is expected. The county routinely applies for FEMA's pre-disaster mitigation grants and will receive $342,890 in federal money for this project. Total elevation costs are $457,187. The homes are located in the French Slough area of the Snohomish River.
French Slough has been identified under FEMA standards as an "area of concern" for flooding events. In total, county officials have identified about 115 structures, many near the French Slough area, with repetitive loss claims due to flooding. "We know it's a hazard area, so we're targeting it with grants such as this one to help reduce potential losses," said David Brookings, the county's Surface Water Utility director.
In 2006 Snohomish County joined FEMA's Community Rating System (CRS) to help reduce the vulnerability of structures prone to flooding damages. Under the FEMA rating structure, nearly 1,500 county flood insurance policy holders with properties in specially designated flood hazard areas can purchase flood insurance at a 25 percent discount.
Snohomish County has earned about $2 million in FEMA disaster mitigation funds, and while this is the county's first push to elevate homes in repetitive flood zones, money has been used to purchase tracts and complete levee improvements.
There have already been buyouts in the Sky View Tracts area near Sultan and Chatham Acres on the north fork of the Stillaguamish River. Parts of the Skykomish River, where Sky View Tracts is located, the Stillaguamish River and the Snohomish River also are prone to flooding.