By David Howell
COFFEEVILLE – Do you have plans to build a new home, set up a mobile home, construct a garage or out building, commercial building or add on to your home?
County officials are issuing a reminder: you must obtain a developer’s permit before starting on any of these projects located outside the city limits of Oakland, Coffeeville and Water Valley. The permit is free, unless you live in an area designated at-risk for flooding, and is part of a comprehensive flood ordinance adopted last July.
The ordinance was adopted as a step to enroll the county in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) which allows property owners to purchase flood insurance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
The developer’s permit is an important part of the ordinance – it allows the county’s flood plain coordinator, Billy Humphreys, to track projects in Yalobusha to keep the county compliant with the NFIP. The permit is available at the E-911 office in Coffeeville.
The reminder comes from Supervisors after Yalobusha County Emergency Management Agency Director Frank Hyde said last week that 80 percent of the projects inspected in recent months by Humphreys were already underway before the permit was issued.
“Fortunately we haven’t run in to any projects that were already installed that were in a flood plain area,” Hyde told supervisors during a recessed meeting held March 21 in Coffeeville
“One day they may be in a flood plain area and then we are going to run into a problem,” Hyde explained.
If a project is located in a flood plain, the developer must comply with requirements in the ordinance that include elevating the structure. A $25 fee is also assessed for the developer’s permit if the project is located in a flood plain. This money is used to offset the expense for Humphreys to monitor the project.
Hyde also told supervisors that only one project constructed in the county was located in a flood plain since the ordinance took effect.