Monday, November 23, 2009

Flood Insurance Information

The Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA) process

When your lender sends you a 45-day letter requiring you to purchase flood insurance, don’t panic. Here is what you should do.

First, get flood insurance before the 45 days expires. If you don’t, the lender will force place it. The premium will be very expensive. Ask for a “Preferred Risk Policy” or a “B,C,X rated policy”.

You will get ALL of your insurance premiums back if you are successful with the LOMA process.

You will need the following:
1. An Elevation Certificate. Call a surveyor or engineer to do this for you. Get someone who has survey experience around the lake. The surveyor or engineer should use the “Comments” section to explain how and from where he got the Base Flood Elevation used on the Elevation Certificate. For Alabama Power Company lakes, there have been no FEMA studies. However, there is “Best Available Data” that the community has sanctioned for these purposes.

2. A FIRMette which is a miniature version of the flood map panel on which your property and structure lies. The surveyor should be able to do this for you or you can do it yourself. If you want to do it yourself, use the following link to access FEMA’s Map Service Center web page. Follow the instructions and try the tutorial to “Create a FIRMette”.

3. A copy of a properly recorded and registered deed or plat.

4. The Form 1 of the MT-1 Application package.

5. Send all four documents to FEMA at the address listed on the MT-1 Application instructions. The LOMA is free.

6. Wait 60 days for a response.

If FEMA agrees with your information that you are out of the special flood hazard area, you will receive a declaration document indicating that your structure is “REMOVED” from the floodplain.


Call your lender and inform him of these developments. Ask if he agrees/concurs. If he does agree, call your insurance agent and cancel your policy and request a refund of your premiums.

If the lender does not agree, you can call your insurance agent and request the “Preferred Risk Policy” which will be less than $300 per year. Escrow the premium. Remember, by Federal statute, the lender has the final say concerning the purchase of flood insurance. FEMA has no authority beyond the flood map review. And, if you have no mortgage, insurance is not required.

Download forms from FEMA:
Elevation Certificate
MT-1 Application Forms


James K. Meredith, CFM

NFIP State Coordinator
State of Alabama

401 Adams Avenue
P.O. Drawer 5690
Montgomery, Alabama 36103-5690
Office: (334) 353-0853
Fax: (334) 242-0776
BlackBerry: (334) 590-4756

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A trip down Rock Creek

Last Saturday (11-14-2009) members of Winston County Smith Lake Advocacy and Alabama Water Watch took a kayak and canoe trip down the upper portions of Rock Creek.

This excursion was part of the Rock Creek Watershed Management Plan project, an effort to raise awareness and provide people with tools for keeping this watershed safe and clean.

In the coming months, the AWW will pursue a good, solid plan for keeping the Rock Creek Watershed safe and sound and it welcomes citizen participation in the project.

The Rock Creek Watershed covers nearly 200-square miles and is a significant source of water for Smith Lake. Keeping this watershed safe and clean goes a long ways towards keeping Smith Lake itself safe and clean.

There were 10 people involved and using kayaks and canoes the participants paddled down about 4 1/4th miles of the upper Rock Creek. They put in where Winston County Road 39 crosses Blevens Creek, followed the Blevens to where it joined Rock Creek and then down to an abandoned bridge where Winston County Road 66 crossed Rock Creek.

This section of creeks features some rapids but not severe ones, wildlife (participants saw birds and a beaver) and the beauty of nature.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

meeting @ 7:00 P.M. November 12th

There will be a meeting in Addison at the new Cullman Electric Bldg on 278 @ 7:00 P.M.on Thursday November 12th. to explain about the 1st small grant acquired to proceed with the watershed study of the Rock Creek Watershed. Dr.William Deutsch, Eric Reutebuch and Mona Scruggs , from Auburn will explain why the Rock Creek watershed is being studied . The Rock Creek Watershed includes Crooked Creek and White Oak Creek as well as Rock Creek.

We had a local clean-up of White Strofoam Friday morning November 6th. The west side of White Oak and about 1/2 way down on the east side is clean. We would like to complete the clean-up of White Oak and Crooked Creek on some warm morning. These were local home owners helping to clean up their own area. We need 3 0r 4 volunteers for the next clean-up.
The "Advocacy" has the boat, equipment and operator. Will you help us keep your backyard on the lake clean? give me a call LaVerne Matheson 256-747-4422 (Winston County only, includes Crooked Creek)