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Manatee County to host open house meetings, answer flood map questions

MANATEE COUNTY – FEMA representatives and County officials will hold two meetings in April to answer questions about new FEMA preliminary flood insurance rate maps (FIRM) and elevation requirements that will impact insurance rates for many Manatee County homeowners.

FEMA and County floodplain officials will be on hand to answer questions during open house meetings scheduled for Monday, April 1 from 4 – 7 p.m. and Tuesday, April 2 from 1 – 7 p.m. at the Bradenton Area Convention Center, One Haben Blvd., Palmetto. Home and business owners, renters, real estate agents, mortgage lenders, surveyors and insurance agents are encouraged to attend.

Manatee County will send mailer notices to thousands of property owners in the affected areas in unincorporated Manatee County notifying them of the meetings.

Over time, flood risks change due to weather events, environmental changes, erosion, land use and other factors. Maps are updated periodically to reflect these changes. FEMA recently released updated, digital flood hazard maps that show the extent to which areas throughout the county are at risk for flooding.

The new preliminary FIRM is based on updated coastal modeling and Gamble Creek watershed in Parrish. The map shows flood hazards more accurately than older maps. FIRMs indicate whether properties are in areas of high, moderate or low flood risk. After reviewing the new Manatee County FIRM, many property owners may find that their risk is higher or lower than they thought. If the risk level for a property changes, so may the requirement to carry flood insurance.

Residents can find out whether their flood zone has changed at

For questions about the maps or the meetings, email