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Kauaʻi Property Owners May Be Faced with Mandatory Flood Insurance Requirements on February 26

by Thunda

(Līhuʻe) – New FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) will become effective on February 26, 2021 and could impact a property’s flood risk and requirements for federally mandated flood insurance.  The DLNR, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Kaua‘i County are informing property owners and renters that updated flood studies for the Hanapēpē and Waimea rivers and Moloa‘a stream and bay may have changed property’s flood risk.

The new maps include changes to the FIRM for Moloa‘a Stream near Moloa‘a Bay and reclassified areas behind the Waimea and Hanapēpē Levees to Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA).

It is important that owners and renters review the revised FIRMs to understand how these changes could affect mortgages, mandatory flood insurance requirements, and/or plans to build and develop on affected properties.

Anyone impacted by the upcoming map change, should contact their insurance agents before February 26th to discuss possible cost saving options. Anyone needing an agent or wanting additional information on flood insurance, can visit the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) website at www.floodsmart.gov or contact the NFIP Help Center at 1-877-336-2627.

DLNR is the state agency responsible for assisting in the coordination of the NFIP between FEMA and Kaua‘i County.

To view the new FIRMs and to understand the effects of the revisions, visit DLNRs flood map webpage (https://waihalana.hawaii.gov/flood-maps/).  FIRMs are also available for viewing at the Kaua‘i County Department of Public Works Engineering Offices at 4444 Rice Street, Suite 175, in Līhu‘e, or from www.msc.fema.gov.

Anyone with further questions should contact interim Kauai County Floodplain Manager, Douglas Haigh at 808-241-4849 or at dhaigh@kauai.gov.

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