STC promotes and assists with a variety of measures for improving the flood resilience of residents, communities, and businesses.

Flood Resilience

Table of Contents

flood resilience
Bath, NY, 1935

Flooding occurs naturally and is a fact of life in the Southern Tier Central region of New York

Flash floods occur somewhere in the region almost every year.

After every flood, the tendency has been for residents to rebuild their lives and pray that “this is the last destructive one.” Structural projects have been built in hopes of controlling future floodwaters. As time passes, people tend to forget about flooding and become complacent. Additional development occurs in flood-prone areas. Deforestation and upland development increase the amount of runoff. Stream channels are allowed to become clogged with debris. In short, residents of the Southern Tier Central region continue to grossly underestimate the destructive powers of their rivers, streams, and lakes.

Where Will it Flood?

Where it rains, it can flood.

It is not possible to predict the behavior of the next flood and it is unwise to rely on any single source of information about where flooding may occur. However, water does run downhill, so it is possible to anticipate the highest risk areas.

Local Flood Hazards

Information about mapped and unmapped flood hazard areas.
STC Webpage

Flood Safety

You are responsible for your own safety!

Flood warning and effective flood response are the greatest defense against loss of life during a flood. Plan for floods and monitor warnings. There may only be a moment’s notice.

Flood Warnings & Safety

Links to current conditions, gauge information, and safety resources.
STC Webpage

Build High to Stay Dry

Floodplains flood! Safe and resilient communities can only be achieved if development is located in low-risk areas or designed to withstand flooding.

Build in flood-safe locations. The best strategy for avoiding flood damage is to locate development outside of flood-prone areas. Local governments can use public education and land use authorities to promote safe development patterns.

Use flood-safe building practices. Floodplain development permits are required for all floodplain development – not just buildings. Local laws enacted by each municipality and the NYS Uniform Codes establish standards for development within the high-risk floodplain delineated on Flood Insurance Rate Maps.

Managing Floodplains

Resources for promoting safe use of floodplains, including information about development standards, floodplain development permits, land use planning, and opportunities for higher standards.
STC Webpage

"Floods are 'acts of God,' but flood losses are largely acts of man."

Gilbert F. White

Protect Your Property and Your Community

Disasters can and do happen!

A flood resilient community is one that has the capacity to prepare for, respond to, and recover from flooding with minimal outside assistance.

Flood Resilience Strategies

Prepare for, respond to, and recover from flooding.
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Floodproofing & Mitigation

Information about mitigation techniques for protecting existing development from flood damage. Includes links to local plans with flood mitigation recommendations.
STC Webpage

Flood Insurance

Flood insurance doesn’t prevent flood damage, but insurance can be a valuable tool for protecting the financial investment in buildings and building contents. Flood losses are not covered by most insurance policies.

Flood Insurance

Information about flood insurance and the Community Rating System (CRS) program that enables reduced flood insurance premiums within participating municipalities.
STC Webpage

Use Natural Flood Protection

The most cost-effective way to moderate flooding is to protect and restore natural systems.

Flooding Problems? Small Solutions with Large Results

Brochure with suggestions for managing runoff near where it falls and protecting natural stream functions. "The small steps that you take to manage runoff from your property and maintain healthy stream systems will combine with efforts of your neighbors to reduce flooding and erosion damage in your community."
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Guidelines for Managing Debris in Streams and Rivers

Brochure with tips for managing debris in streams without impacting upstream and downstream neighbors. Includes information about permits and sources of technical assistance in Steuben County.
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Dredging: Is it a Good Solution to Flooding Problems?

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Resilient Watersheds - The Funnel, the Sponge, and the Slide

Presentation provides an introduction to watershed functions and outlines strategies for achieving flood resilience: (1) Manage water where it falls. (2) Make space for water. (3) Live with floods.
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Live in Harmony with Streams: Let Streams Move & Floodplains Flood

Understand and protect natural stream and floodplain processes, which include storing and slowing down floodwaters.
STC Webpage

Watershed Planning

Any activity that affects drainage characteristics or erosion anywhere in a watershed can impact flooding problems. Watershed planning and land use management are critical components of flood risk reduction efforts.
STC Documents

Stormwater

Stormwater management regulations require mitigation of adverse impacts from development by controlling the amount and timing of runoff. Flood damage can be reduced by managing runoff near where it falls: Slow it down. Spread it out. Soak it in.
STC Webpage

Protecting Natural Floodplain Functions

Online training resources assembled by the NYS Floodplain and Stormwater Managers Association
Go to Website

"No single raindrop believes it is to blame for the flood."

Protect the levees that protect your community

Damage to the protective vegetation on a levee places the entire community at risk of catastrophic results. Do not drive on levees or damage the sod.

Maps of Levees and Approximate Protected Areas

STC Documents

Educate the Public

Knowledgeable citizens make informed decisions that balance flood risks with other concerns and are more likely to take voluntary actions to reduce their risks.

Before Buying or Building: Flood Risk Identification

Brochure provides suggestions to help identify potential flooding issues before buying or building a home.
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NAI How-to Guide for Education & Outreach

Guidance and tools for effective communication about flooding issues; prepared by the Association of State Floodplain Managers.
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Focus on Floods Resources

This Nurture Nature Center website is designed to increase the awareness of flood risks and engage the public in preparing for floods. The key message is: "Floods Happen. Lessen the Loss." Resources include a classroom poster, coloring sheets, activity worksheets, an animated video, and more.
Go to Website

Flood Education Messages

Key messages for public outreach about flooding in the Southern Tier of New York. Each message is presented as a short phrase or slogan, followed by bullets explaining why the person should act, what they should do, how those actions reduce losses, and where to learn more about how to proceed.
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Flood Education Plan

Regional plan presents a long-term strategy for flood education in Chemung, Schuyler, and Steuben Counties. The plan identifies key messages and proposed projects.
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Education and Research

Section 11 of Susquehanna-Chemung Action Plan (2012)
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“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

Nelson Mandella
Additional Resources

No Adverse Impact (NAI) Floodplain Stewardship

NAI is a “good neighbor” approach to flood risk management. It is based on the premise that it’s not right to transfer or worsen a flooding problem. No one has the right to use their property to harm other people. Any adverse impacts should either be avoided or mitigated. (Developed by the Association of State Floodplain Managers)

No Adverse Impact Floodplain Management Presentation

STC presentation challenges communities to consider "good neighbor" strategies for managing flood risks and improving safety.
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No Adverse Impact Resources

ASFPM resources include legal references and seven NAI How-to Guides to assist communities with implementing NAI principles.
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Flood Resilience Planning

Online training resources assembled by the NYS Floodplain and Stormwater Managers Association
Go to Website

New York State Floodplain and Stormwater Managers Association

Website for this professional organization includes training resources and letters from the association advocating for improved flood-related public policies.
Go to Website

ASFPM Flood Resource Library

Association of State Floodplain Managers maintains a searchable online library of flood-related publications.
Go to Website

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