Floodplain Management

The City of Plattsburgh participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). As a participating community, the City has adopted Floodplain Management practices through several ordinances that severely limit the development allowed in 100-year floodplains (the area inundated by a storm that has a 1% chance of happening in any year). For property with any portion located within the 100-year floodplain, regardless of structure location, a flood insurance policy may be required.

City of Plattsburgh Standards require all new structures be constructed two feet above the adjacent water surface elevation of the 100-year floodplain. Additionally, the City requires that no portion of any residential lot be included in the 100-year floodplain. When developing along Lake Champlain, the Saranac River or Scomotion Creek within the City of Plattsburgh, the developer must submit a Flood Study to the City showing the 100-year floodplain and water surface elevation based on both current land-use and future land-use assumptions.

Flood Insurance Rate Maps
Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) delineate the floodplains throughout the United States and are used by lenders and insurance companies to determine if your property is in a floodplain. The FIRMs for the City of Plattsburgh were last published in September 2007. Paper copies are available for viewing at the Engineering Services Department, the Building Inspector’s Office or may be viewed and printed online for free at the FEMA Flood Map Store.

Letters of Map Revisions
Flood Insurance Rate Maps, like the Plattsburgh landscape, can change. If a developer wishes to alter and/or fill a portion of the floodplain, they must prepare a Flood Study showing no adverse effects or substantial changes in the water surface elevation. This flood study, along with a detailed application, may be submitted to FEMA to be considered for a Letter of Map Revisions. If approved, the Letter of Map Revisions serves as an official revision to the FIRM. Individual property owners may also contest the floodplain designation for their property by submitting information to FEMA.