State Senate approves resolution calling on feds to reverse detrimental floodplain regulations

HARRISBURG – The Senate of Pennsylvania overwhelmingly voted to call on the President and Congress to review the federal floodplain management standards that were instituted by executive order in January 2015.

Senate Resolution 421, sponsored by Senator David G. Argall (R-Schuylkill/Berks), is in response to local redevelopment efforts that are hamstrung due to the new federal standards.

As a result of the changes to the federal standards, development proposals competing for housing tax credits through the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency are at a distinct disadvantage when located within a designated floodplain.

“These new floodplain standards, while well-intentioned, have hampered local communities with regards to their redevelopment efforts and repurposing of older, blighted properties,” Argall said.

The community of Port Carbon is working with a developer interested in a senior housing project. However, the property is partially in a floodplain, creating a serious obstacle to the site’s redevelopment.

“These floodplain standards should be reviewed on a case-by-case basis,” Argall said. “We don’t want to see homes and properties wiped out due to flooding, but an entire project should not be deemed ineligible just because a portion of the property is touching a floodplain.”

The Resolution will be sent to the President and Pennsylvania’s Congressional delegation.


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