FEMA Gives South Dakota County Ultimatum, Flood Insurance Rates Could Rise

March 20, 2015

More than 400 homeowners whose property lies along the Missouri River could end up paying a $50 surcharge on their flood insurance if county officials in southeast South Dakota do not meet a federal deadline.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency plans to put Union County on probationary status with the National Flood Insurance Program starting in mid-May unless it addresses what it calls program deficiencies.

FEMA officials say the county does not have adequate record keeping and has failed to manage development in the floodplain. FEMA says inspectors have found homes with basements on the floodplain. Basements are banned in floodplain areas.

Zoning director Dennis Henze says the county plans to meet the May 18 deadline to keep homeowners from paying the surcharge.

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