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Cooperating Technical Partners Program

FEMA is seeking qualified partners to collaborate in maintaining up-to-date flood hazard maps and other flood hazard information. This page contains information on the Cooperating Technical Partners (CTP) Program and how to get involved.

With over 20,000 communities in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), there is a significant challenge keeping flood hazard maps current. The CTP Program is an innovative approach to creating partnerships between the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and participating NFIP communities, regional agencies, state agencies, tribes and universities that have the interest and capability to become more active participants in the FEMA flood hazard mapping program.

If you would like to learn more about the FEMA map production processes or view FEMA’s guidelines and standards to support the Risk Mapping, Assessment and Planning (MAP) program that are required for flood projects, visit FEMA's Guidelines and Standards for Flood Risk Analysis and Mapping page.

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CTP Program Information

Each fiscal year, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) issues a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) document to announce the availability of the CTP cooperative agreement funding opportunity. The NOFO describes the available funding, priorities, requirements and process for eligible applicants to request funding for program activities. FEMA has developed a PowerPoint presentation that provides general information on the CTP Program. FEMA has also developed a five-year operations plan, which can be accessed here. The CTP Five-Year Operations Plan contains goals, objectives and recommendations to enhance the CTP Program.

CTP Partnership Agreement Template

The Partnership Agreement is a broad statement of principle, emphasizing the value of the three components of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP): Flood Insurance, Floodplain Management and Flood Hazard Mapping. If you have a current Partnership Agreement, please consider signing up for the CTP Collaboration Center. The CTP Collaboration Center is a one-stop shop encouraging both collaboration and information dissemination. The center is set up to facilitate collaboration through a variety of channels: important announcements, an events calendar, upcoming training options, mentoring opportunities, a discussion board, and links to resources that are pertinent to the CTP community.

CTP Mapping Activity Statement Template

As partners and FEMA identify specific mapping activities to perform under the Partnership Agreement, they will develop Mapping Activity Statements (MASs) to define the roles and responsibilities of all partners involved in a study/mapping project. FEMA has developed MAS Templates to help Project Teams document the planned activities, roles and responsibilities for each project.

Estimating the Value of Partner Contributions to Flood Mapping Projects (Blue Book)

FEMA developed the Blue Book, dated September 2011, to outline the unit cost approach FEMA uses in estimating the value of contributions made by communities, tribal nations, regional agencies and state agencies for updated Flood Insurance Rate Map production.

Digital Technical Support Data Notebook (TSDN) Submittal Requirements

For FEMA-contracted studies/mapping projects (including projects initiated under the CTP Program), FEMA mapping partners and contractors must organize deliverable materials in a standardized format. This allows FEMA to maintain nationwide standards for mapping under the NFIP. The current FEMA standard is the TSDN. The TSDN contains all of the support data for a community for which FEMA published a flood map and revisions to that flood map. The requirements for the TSDN are documented in FEMA's Appendix M: Guidance for Technical and Administrative Support Data.

A partner may submit a digital TSDN, in lieu of the hard copy; all materials that are not in digital format must be submitted in hard copy format. A transmittal letter clearly identifying the project and the materials provided must be submitted along with the TSDN.

CTP Frequently Asked Questions

What is the "CTP" program?

The CTP Program allows communities, regional agencies, state agencies, universities and tribal nations that have the interest and capability to become active partners in the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Flood Hazard Mapping program.


What regional agencies are eligible for partnerships?

Eligible regional agencies include: watershed management and flood control districts, regional planning councils, councils of governments and regional offices of state agencies.


What commitment has FEMA made to the CTP Program?

In support of the CTP Program, FEMA has committed to the following:

  • To recognize the contributions made by FEMA's state, regional, local community, university and tribal partners by providing timely and accurate flood hazard information;
  • To maximize the use of Partner contributions to the fullest extent while maintaining consistent national standards;
  • To fully integrate Partners into the flood hazard data development process, with the corresponding authorities and responsibilities;
  • To provide training and technical assistance to Partners when appropriate; and
  • To facilitate mentoring to increase capability for existing and potential Partners.


What are the eligibility criteria for participation in the CTP Program?

The eligibility criteria are as follows:

  • The potential Partner must have processes and/or systems in place to support mapping or data collection activities that contribute to flood hazard identification. These processes and/or systems must be supported by non-federal funding.
  • The potential Partner must have the capability to perform the mapping activities for which it is applying. This capability may be indicated through (but not limited to) a FEMA Regional Office review of both the map products previously prepared by the Partner and the existing map production processes or systems the Partner intends to use for CTP Program-related mapping activities.
  • The potential Partner must be a community participating in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) that is in good standing in the Program as determined by the FEMA Regional Office, or be a state or regional agency that serves communities that participate in the NFIP.
  • Partners that receive Federal funding through a Cooperative Agreement must be able to perform the financial management activities required as part of the Cooperative Agreement (e.g., account for federal funds, prepare financial reports).
  • In addition to the eligibility criteria described above, a potential Partner must have in-house staff capabilities in the appropriate technical area for the given mapping activity. If the work for any portion of a mapping activity is contracted, the potential Partner must have in-house staff capable of monitoring the contractor(s) and approving the products developed by the contractor(s). For these purposes, "capability" is demonstrated experience in the performance of, or management through contracting of, similar activities.


What are the benefits of the CTP Program?

The following are beneficial reasons for partnering with state, local and regional organizations to produce NFIP maps:

  • The data used for local permitting and planning is also the basis for the NFIP map, facilitating more efficient floodplain management.
  • The CTP Program provides the opportunity to interject a tailored, local focus into a national Program; thus, where unique conditions may exist, the necessary, special approaches to flood hazard identification may be taken.
  • The partnership mechanism provides the opportunity to pool resources and extend the productivity of limited public funds.


Does a Partner face any additional liability by participating in the CTP Program?

Partners face no additional liability by participating in this Program. Existing federal and state laws govern an entity's liability for providing information to the public, enforcing local ordinances and zoning regulations, etc. FEMA retains the final authority for issuing flood maps and revisions to flood maps.


What are the terms of the initial Partnership Agreement between FEMA and a state, regional or local partner?

The Partnership Agreement is a broad statement of principle that emphasizes the value of the NFIP's three components: Flood Insurance, Floodplain Management and Flood Hazard Mapping. A template for the Partnership Agreement may be viewed and downloaded on the FEMA Web site. This agreement is a prerequisite for any further CTP Program-related mapping activities.


Are any other agreements required before mapping projects may be undertaken through the CTP Program?

As the Partner and FEMA identify specific mapping activities to undertake, they will develop a Mapping Activity Statement (MAS) to define roles and responsibilities of all Partners involved in a particular Flood Map Project. Developing the MAS will be a collaborative effort where both the Partner(s) and FEMA contribute data and units of work to maximize the extent, accuracy and usability of flood hazard studies to best meet local, state and federal needs, while minimizing costs for all parties. The MAS is a key component of the Cooperative Agreement package because it defines the activities that will be accomplished, the entities responsible for them, how the activities will be funded and the nature of the working relationship between FEMA and its Partners. A Mapping Activity Statement (MAS) and Statement of Work (SOW) Templates for the Cooperating Technical Partner (CTP) Program may be viewed or downloaded on the FEMA Web site.


What types of mapping activities may be performed by qualified Partners?

Qualified Partners may perform various mapping activities, separately or in combination, under a Mapping Activity Statement with FEMA. In the Cooperating Technical Partners CTP Program Guidance and Application Kit, you can view the list of fundable and non-fundable mapping activities.


What type of funding is available for mapping activities performed under a CTP agreement?

CTP Program-related activities may be funded based on FEMA's priority of mapping needs and the availability of FEMA funds for mapping. If FEMA funds are provided, the Partner will receive funds through a Cooperative Agreement. Because the FEMA mapping budget varies annually, the amount of funding for CTP Program-related activities also will vary. Each FEMA Regional Office will determine how much of its annual mapping budget will be allocated to mapping activities under the CTP Program. The Cooperative Agreements awarded for mapping activities under the CTP Program are intended to supplement, not supplant, ongoing mapping efforts by a Partner, whether it be a community, regional agency or state agency. Funds provided by FEMA would be in addition to the resources provided by the Partner for the mapping activities.


What requirements must be met if a Partner decides to contract a portion of any Flood Map Project undertaken through the CTP Program?

Contractors used by Partners for FEMA-funded activities must meet the requirements of Part 13 of the Code of Federal Regulations (44 CFR Part 13). Within Part 13, §13.36 covers procurement standards that must be followed for any contracted mapping-related activities. Part 13 may be downloaded in PDF or text format from the U.S. Government Printing Office.


What effect will participation in the CTP Program have on flood insurance rates?

Communities are eligible for credits under the FEMA Community Rating System (CRS).


What effect will participation in the CTP Program have on the processing time for flood map revisions?

The impact that each mapping activity will have on the mapping process will vary. For more information, interested parties should consult with the appropriate Regional CTP Coordinator.


How many Partners have signed agreements with FEMA under the CTP Program?

Over 240 communities, universities, regional agencies, tribal nations and state agencies have signed Partnership Agreements with FEMA and the number is growing. Interested parties may obtain current information on active Partners from the Regional CTP Coordinator in the appropriate FEMA Regional Office. To view a list of Partners, visit the Partners List. You may also obtain information about individual Partners by visiting the CTP news page.


Who should interested parties contact to arrange a partnership under the CTP Program?

Eligible communities, regional agencies and state agencies should contact the Regional CTP Coordinator at the appropriate FEMA Regional Office.


If an individual has a question about the CTP Program and the Regional CTP Coordinator is not available, is there anyone else that individual can contact?

For general questions about the CTP Program, interested parties may call the FEMA Map Information eXchange toll free at 1-877-FEMA MAP (1-877-336-2627) for information or e-mail Laura Algeo.

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Last Updated: 
09/24/2019 - 08:22