Local News

Eastern Cities Consider Flood Plain Expansion

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ROCKY MOUNT — State lawmakers are looking for ways to discourage building in flood plains. The House has passed such a plan.

A few towns are thinking about making their own restrictions so that devastating flooding such as seen after Hurricane Floyd will not happen again.

Rocky Mount and Wilson are both taking a second look at their flood rules.

For years, new homes in flood-prone areas have been forbidden, and at the next vote those areas could grow.

Even now, in Rocky Mount, some homes cannot be rebuilt unless the owners agree to raise them or build a buffer.

State lawmakers probably will not require such rules, but they could withhold grant money from towns that continue to allow building in problem areas.

Lawmakers say there is a lot to consider.

One certainty is that Rocky Mount and many other communities want new maps made of the flood plain.

Because of natural and man-made changes, the old maps are not as accurate.

Public hearings are scheduled in Rocky Mount and Wilson before council members vote on any new restrictions.

Some developers plan to speak out against the move, saying their industry is being unfairly singled out.