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Flood Damage? Get Required Permits Before Rebuilding

Release date: 
September 21, 2007
Release Number: 

ROCKFORD, Ill. -- Before considering new construction and repairs of flood-damaged property, Illinois residents are urged to consult local building officials to obtain the necessary permits.

"Obtaining building permits is especially important for those with homes or businesses located within a FEMA mapped floodplain," said Andrew Velasquez III, Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA). Velasquez reminds citizens rebuilding after recent floods that building permits are based on local codes and ordinances that are enforced locally, not by FEMA.

Floodplain development permits cannot be waived, and local governments cannot reduce or ignore the floodplain requirement. Permits are required for work on removing or replacing the roof, walls, siding, wallboard, plaster, insulation, paneling, cabinets, flooring, electrical system, plumbing, heating or air conditioning. Repair projects must meet community building codes and flood-damage prevention ordinances.

  • Permits protect the residents, their families, communities, and buildings by ensuring all proposed work complies with current codes, standards, flood ordinances and construction techniques;

  • Permits can provide a permanent record of compliance with elevation, and/or retrofitting requirements, which is useful information when selling your home and necessary for the flood insurance rating;

  • Local permit offices can provide suggestions or literature on how to protect your home or business from future disaster-related damages;

  • Local permit offices can provide consumers with information on selecting licensed contractors and advice on protecting themselves from unscrupulous contractors;

  • Residents are asked to start construction and repair only after they have received permits from their local building department. Repairs begun without proper permits may be subject to stop work orders, fines and penalties.

FEMA coordinates the federal government's role in preparing for, preventing, mitigating the effects of, responding to, and recovering from all domestic disasters, whether natural or man-made, including acts of terror.

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
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