New flood maps bring uncertainty to Cumberland County

Written by Ben Allen, General Assignment Reporter | Apr 13, 2015 12:45 PM

(Carlisle) -- Maps determine how much homeowners pay for flood insurance, and changes will be coming to Cumberland County, as a federal agency has started to collect data for the new maps.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency met with Cumberland County municipalities recently, after many raised concerns about the maps.

More people are watching the issue now since homeowners in flood plains are paying more and more, according to Steve Hoffman with Cumberland County planning department.

"There is, because what's happening flood insurance rates are anticipated to increase substantially to cover the actual cost of insuring those properties."

The current maps are considered accurate in some areas, but some say they miss the mark in others.

"Some of the mapping appears to be not accurate, although some of it also is accurate. It was reassuring, the tone was good, that FEMA is working on making these maps much more accurate," says Hoffman.

Hoffman says FEMA is gathering data now.

He expects preliminary maps will be released in 2016, with final maps coming a year later.

Those who disagree with the results will be able to appeal to the federal agency.

The county has no official authority through the process, instead merely advising FEMA on the issue.

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