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2016 Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District (NRD) and the City of Omaha have adopted the 2016 Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP). A HMP is a community-guided document that identifies both vulnerability to natural and man-made hazards, and mitigation measures to reduce or eliminate this vulnerability.  Below are the links to the final approved multi-jurisdictional plan and the appendix for Douglas County.

2016 Hazard Mitigation Plan

Douglas County Appendix

Flood Hazard:

Local Flood Hazard History

Floodplain Development Requirements:

Floodplain Ordinance (Ordinance 39946) - Amended March 18, 2014, Effective May 19, 2014.

This amendment to the floodplain ordinance adopts new and more detailed flood hazard maps and adopts a new flood insurance study for the Elkhorn River, in addition to updating the flood fringe and floodway overlay district regulations.  A complete, updated version of the floodplain ordinance can be found here.

Floodplain Ordinance (Ordinance 38724) - Amended May 11, 2010, Effective May 25, 2010.
This amendment to the floodplain ordinance adopts new and more detailed digital flood hazard maps for the West Papillion Creek, Hell Creek and North Branch of the West Papillion Creek, in addition to updating the flood fringe and floodway overlay district regulations.  A complete, updated version of the floodplain ordinance can be found here.

Floodplain Development Application Form and Instructions - Any new development, minor improvement or substantial improvement may be undertaken in the designated floodplain only with a Floodplain Development Permit.  An application for this permit must be submitted with any construction permit application.  The required floodplain and construction information may be included on the site plan and the construction drawings.

Return the completed application form with the required plan(s) to the Planning Department, 1819 Farnam Street, Suite 1110.

To report suspected illegal floodplain development please call Robert Laroco, AICP, CFM and the City of Omaha's Floodplain Management Coordinator at 402-444-5150 x2056.

Letter of Map Amendment/Letter of Map Revision - Information regarding change of flood map process

Map of Local Flood Hazard:
Use the online GIS system to help determine if your property is in a floodplain.
FEMA Map Service Center - Search for flood maps and other floodplain related information from FEMA.
FEMA Map Service Center Fact Sheet- What is the MSC and what products/services are available

Flood Insurance:
The City of Omaha participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which then qualifies citizens and businesses to purchase flood insurance.

More Information for Property owners on Flood Insurance Costs and Coverage - Information on finding an agent, how to buy flood insurance, etc.
      National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) - Fact Sheet
      Additional Information on the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)

Property Protection Measures:
Resources that can help you protect your property from flooding including installing sewer backflow valves, raising/floodproofing electrical or HVAC equipment, retrofitting, etc.

Elevation Certificates:
Copies of Elevation Certificates may be obtained through the Planning Department (if available)
Elevation Certificate Form and Instructions  - Get information on the new Elevation Certificate (expires 11/30/2018)

Flood Safety: Plan Ahead
Before a flood
      During a flood
      After a flood

Flood Warning System:
NOAA Weather Radio
Real Time Stream Gauge Information - Up to the minute readings for streams in the Papio Creek Watershed (Data provided by Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service) 

Drainage System Maintenance:
Chapter 18, Article VI of the Omaha Municipal Code contains regulations against litter (including concrete, stone, gravel, dirt, etc.) obstructing creeks and watercourses.  Illegal dumping of litter in a drainage facility will reduce the efficiency of the system and can cause a breakdown in the drainage system, which can result in flooding.

Stormwater Management Ordinance:
Chapter 32 of the Omaha Municipal Code contains regulations regarding minimum requirements and procedures to control the adverse impacts associated with increased and altered stormwater runoff.  Article V of the chapter specifically addresses Post-Construction Stormwater Management Plan requirements.

Natural and Beneficial Functions of the Floodplain:
Floodplains are part of a dynamic physical and biological system.  If the floodplain is preserved in or restored to their natural state they provide many benefits to both the human and natural systems.

The benefits range from providing recreational and aesthetic pleasure to reducing the number and severity of floods, helping handle stormwater runoff and minimizing non-point water pollution. For example, by allowing floodwater to slow down, sediments settle out, thus maintaining water quality. The natural vegetation filters out impurities and uses excess nutrients.

Such natural processes are must less expensive than it would take to build facilities to correct flood, stormwater, water quality and other community problems.

Natural resources of floodplains fall into three categories:

· Water resources;

· Biological resources, and;

· Societal resources.

The following describes each category's natural and beneficial functions:

Water resources and functions:

Floodplains, over time, have developed their own ways to handle flooding and erosion with natural features that provide floodwater storage and conveyance, reduce flood velocities and flood peaks, and reduce sedimentation.

Natural controls on flooding and erosion help to maintain water quality by filtering nutrients and impurities from runoff, processing organic wastes and moderating temperature fluctuations.

These natural controls also contribute to recharging groundwater by promoting infiltration and refreshing aquifers, and by reducing the frequency and duration of low surface flows.

Biologic resources and functions:

Floodplains enhance biological productivity by supporting a high rate of plant growth. This helps to maintain biodiversity and the integrity of ecosystems.

Floodplains provide excellent habitats for fish and wildlife by serving as breeding and feeding grounds. They also create and enhance waterfowl habitats, and help to protect habitats for rare and endangered species.

Societal resources and functions:

People benefit from floodplains through the food grown on them, the recreational opportunities provided and the scientific knowledge and outdoor education gained in studying them.

Wild and cultivated products are harvested in floodplains, which are enhanced agricultural land made rich by sediment deposits. They provide open space, for recreational opportunities or simple enjoyment of their aesthetic beauty.

Floodplains provide areas for scientific study and outdoor education. They contain cultural resources such as historic or archaeological sites, and can provide opportunities for environmental and other kinds of studies.

Floodplains can increase a community's overall quality of life, a role that often has been undervalued. By transforming floodplains from problem areas into value-added assets, the community can improve its quality of life. Omaha has numerous examples of this including the extensive riverfront development, the various dam sites, trail system and some of its large park facilities.

Parks, bike paths, open spaces, wildlife conservation areas and aesthetic features are important to citizens. Assets like these make the community more appealing to potential employers, investors, residents, property owners, and tourists.

(This section adapted from Protecting Floodplain Resources, A Guidebook for Communities, 1996.)

Other Related Floodplain Information Links:

FEMA.gov - Federal Emergency Management Agency
FloodSmart.gov - Official website of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)
Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District

US Army Corps of Engineers
State of Nebraska Floodplain Management