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Glossary

Terms frequently used by FEMA. In a few instances, standard insurance industry terms have been added for additional focus and emphasis.
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Term: Base Flood

A flood having a one percent chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year. This is the regulatory standard also referred to as the "100-year flood." The base flood is the national standard used by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and all Federal agencies for the purposes of requiring the purchase of flood insurance and regulating new development. Base Flood Elevations (BFEs) are typically shown on Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs).

National Flood Insurance Program Requirements

  • 59.1 - Definition
Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Base Flood Depth (BFD)

The depth shown on the Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) for Zone AO that indicates the depth of water above highest adjacent grade resulting from a flood that has a 1% chance of equaling or exceeding that level in any given year.

Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Base Flood Elevation (BFE)

The elevation of surface water resulting from a flood that has a 1% chance of equaling or exceeding that level in any given year. The BFE is shown on the Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) for zones AE, AH, A1–A30, AR, AR/A, AR/AE, AR/A1– A30, AR/AH, AR/AO, V1–V30 and VE.

Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Basement

Any area of the building having its floor subgrade (below ground level) on all sides. The lowest floor of a residential building including basement must be above the Base Flood Elevation (BFE). Basements below the BFE are only allowed in communities that have obtained a basement exception from FEMA. Floodproofed non-residential basements are allowed.

National Flood Insurance Program Requirements

  • 59.1 - Definition
  • 60.3 - Flood plain management criteria for flood-prone areas
Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Benefits

Includes compensation that is over and above salaries or wages paid to employees or on behalf of the employees during employment. This would include compensation for periods of authorized absences from the job, such as vacation leave, sick leave, military leave and the like provided such costs are absorbed by all organization activities in proportion to the relative amount of time or effort actually devoted to each. It also includes employer contributions or expenses for social security, employee insurance, workers' compensation, pension plan costs and the like provided such benefits, whether treated as indirect costs or as direct costs, shall be distributed to particular awards and other activities in a manner consistent with the pattern of benefits accruing to the individuals or group of employees whose salaries and wages are chargeable to such awards and other activities. Overtime expenses, other than those meeting FLSA requirements, are not eligible as benefits costs.

Glossary Section: AFGP - Assistance to Firefighters Grants Program
Term: Binder or Certificate of Insurance

A temporary agreement between company, agent/producer and insured that the policy is in effect. The NFIP does not recognize binders. However, for informational purposes only, the NFIP recognizes Certificates of Insurance and similar forms for renewal policies.

Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Blanket Insurance

A single amount of insurance applying to more than 1 building and/or contents. Blanket insurance is not permitted under the NFIP

Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Breakaway Wall

A wall that is not part of the structural support of the building and is intended through its design and construction to collapse under specific lateral loading forces, without causing damage to the elevated portion of the building or supporting foundation system. Any walls below the lowest floor in a building in a V Zone should give way under wind and water loads without causing collapse, displacement, or other damage to the elevated portion of the building or the supporting pilings or columns.

National Flood Insurance Program Requirements

  • 59.1 - Definition
  • 60.3 - Flood plain management criteria for flood-prone areas
    • (e)(4) - V Zone Elevation Requirement
    • (e)(5) Free of Obstruction Requirement
Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Budget Object Class

Functional budgeted areas where expenditures may be classified such as personnel, fringe benefits, travel, equipment, expendable supplies, contractual costs, construction or renovation costs, other costs (that cannot be adequately listed in the listed classifications) and indirect charges.

Glossary Section: AFGP - Assistance to Firefighters Grants Program
Term: Budget Period

For the purposes of the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program, the budget period is the federal fiscal year. It is the fiscal year where the awarded funds were obligated by the awarding agency.

Glossary Section: AFGP - Assistance to Firefighters Grants Program
Term: Building

A structure with 2 or more outside rigid walls and a fully secured roof, that is affixed to a permanent site; or

• A manufactured home (a "manufactured home," also known as a mobile home, is a structure built on a permanent chassis, transported to its site in 1 or more sections, and affixed to a permanent foundation); or
• A travel trailer without wheels, built on a chassis and affixed to a permanent foundation, that is regulated under the community's floodplain management and building ordinances or laws.
• "Building" does not mean a gas or liquid storage tank or a recreational vehicle, a park trailer, or other similar vehicle, except as described above.

Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Building in the Course of Construction

A walled and roofed building (see the General Rules section for the exception) that is principally above ground and affixed to a permanent site. It does not include building materials or supplies intended for use in construction, alteration, or repair unless such materials or supplies are within an enclosed building on the premises.

Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Business Building

A building in which the named insured is a commercial enterprise primarily carried out to generate income and the coverage is for:

1. A building designed as a non-habitational building;
2. A mixed-use building in which the total floor area devoted to residential uses is
a. 50% or less of the total floor area within the building if the residential building is a single family property; or
b. 75% or less of the total floor area within the building for all other residential properties; or
3. A building designed for use as office or retail space, wholesale space, hospitality space, or for similar uses.

Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Business Property

Either a business building or the contents within a business building, or both.

Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Biennial Report

Every two years, communities participating in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) must complete and submit a Biennial Report describing the community''s progress in the previous two years in implementing floodplain management measures and on its needs for re-mapping and technical assistance.

FEMA sends the Biennial Report form to local community officials. Submission of this report is required as part of a community's participation in the NFIP.

National Flood Insurance Program Requirements

  • 59.22 (b)(2) - Biennial Report
Glossary Section: NFIP - National Flood Insurance Program
Term: Business Impact Analysis (BIA)

A method of identifying the consequences of failing to perform a function or requirement.

Glossary Section: Continuity
Term: Business Process Analysis (BPA)

A method of examining, identifying, and mapping the functional processes, workflows, activities, personnel expertise, systems, data, interdependencies and alternate locations inherent in the execution of a function or requirement.

Glossary Section: Continuity
Term: BIA

Business Impact Analysis

Glossary Section: Continuity
Term: BPA

Business Process Analysis

Glossary Section: Continuity