Public Invited to Comment on Flood Maps for Otero County, New Mexico

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DENTON, Texas –– After working together for months to create new preliminary flood maps, Otero County and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) officials want to hear from the public about preliminary flood maps.

Homeowners, renters and business owners in the Village of Tularosa and unincorporated areas of Otero County are encouraged to look at the preliminary flood maps to learn where flood risks have been identified. Anyone who has comments or who would like to file an appeal has 90 days, from September 16, 2014 until December 15, 2014 to submit them.

An appeal is a formal objection to proposed base flood elevations or flood depths, Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA) boundaries and zones, or floodways. Appeals must be based on technical data that show proposed maps to be scientifically incorrect. Anyone who makes an appeal must include the method, data and analysis used to support the claim.  A comment is an objection to a base map feature change such as labels, incorrect roads, jurisdictional boundaries, or any other non-appealable change.

Comments and appeals should be sent to FEMA through the local floodplain administrator. Anyone who has not had a chance to participate in local flood insurance meetings or to review the new flood maps needs to contact their county or community floodplain administrator.  Other resources include:

•    Viewing the preliminary flood index maps at:   http://www.riskmap6.com/documents/Meeting_327/35035CIND1B.pdf
•    Using a live chat service about flood maps at http://go.usa.gov/r6C, just click on the “Live Chat” icon;
•    Viewing the Preliminary Flood Hazard Data at:
     http://www.fema.gov/view-your-communitys-preliminary-flood-hazard-data-0;   
•    Viewing online interactive flood maps at: http://maps.riskmap6.com/NM/Otero; and
•    Contacting a FEMA Map Specialist at 1-877-FEMA MAP (1-877-336-2627); email FEMAMapSpecialist@riskmapcds.com

Once all comments and appeals are resolved, FEMA will notify communities of the effective date of the final maps. When a flood risk is identified, the next step is to consider the purchase of a flood policy from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).  Contacting a local insurance agent is the first step to gather information about insurance. Visit www.floodsmart.gov or call 1-888-379-9531 to locate an agent in your area.

                                                                                                     
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.   Follow us on Twitter at and the FEMA Blog at http://blog.fema.gov.

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