Unless specifically defined below, words or phrases used in this Ordinance shall be
interpreted to give them the meaning they have in common usage and to give this Ordinance
its most reasonable application.
Area of shallow flooding - means a designated AO, AH or VO zone on a community's Flood
Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) with a one (1%) percent chance or greater annual chance of
flooding to an average depth of one (1) to three (3) feet where a clearly defined channel does
not exist, where the path of flooding is unpredictable and where velocity flow may be evident.
Such flooding is characterized by ponding or sheet flow.
Area of special flood hazard - is the land in the floodplain within a community subject to a one
(1%) percent or greater chance of flooding in any given year. The area may be designated
as Zone A on the Flood Hazard Boundary Map (FHBM). After detailed ratemaking has been
completed in preparation for publication of the FIRM, Zone A usually is refined into Zones A,
AE, AH, AO, A1-99, VO, V1-30, VE or V.
Breakaway walls - means a wall that is not part of the structural support of the building and is
intended through its design and construction to collapse under specific lateral loading forces,
without causing damage to the elevated portion of the building or supporting foundation
Elevated building - means a non-basement building (i) built, in the case of a building in Zones
A1-30, AE, A, A99, AO, AH, B, C, X, and D, to have the top of the elevated floor, or in the
case of a building in Zone V1-30, VE, or V, to have the bottom of the lowest horizontal
structure member of the elevated floor elevated above the ground level by means of pilings,
columns (posts and piers), or shear walls parallel to the floor of the water and (ii) adequately
anchored so as not to impair the structural integrity of the building during a flood of up to the
magnitude of the base flood. In the case of Zones A1-30, AE, A, A99, AO, AH, B, C, X, D,
"elevated building" also includes a building elevated by means of fill or solid foundation
perimeter walls with openings sufficient to facilitate the unimpeded movement of flood waters.
In the case of Zones V1-30, VE, or V, "elevated building" also includes a building otherwise
meeting the definition of "elevated building," even though the lower area is enclosed by
means of breakaway walls if the breakaway walls meet the standards of Section 60.3(e)(5) of
the National Flood Insurance Program regulations.
Existing construction - means for the purpose of determining rates, structures for which the
"start of construction" commenced before the effective date of the FIRM or before January 1,
1975, for FIRM's effective before that date. "Existing construction" may also be referred to as
Existing mobile home park or mobile home subdivision - means a parcel (or contiguous
parcels) of land divided into two (2) or more mobile home lots for rent or sale for which the
construction of facilities for servicing the lot on which the mobile home is to be affixed
(including, at a minimum, the installation of utilities, either final site grading or the pouring of
concrete pads, and the construction of streets) is completed before the effective date of this
Expansions to an existing mobile home park or mobile home subdivision - means the
preparation of additional sites by the construction of facilities for servicing the lots on which
the mobile homes are to be affixed (including the installation of utilities, either final site
grading or the pouring of concrete pads, and the construction of streets).
(1) The overflow of inland or tidal waters.
(2) The unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source.
Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) - means an official map of a community, on which the Federal Emergency Management Agency has delineated both the areas of special flood hazards and the risk premium zones applicable to the community.
Flood insurance study - is the official report provided by the Federal Emergency
Management Agency. The report contains flood profiles, water surface elevation of the base
flood, as well as the Flood Boundary-Floodway Map.
Functionally dependent use - means a use which cannot perform its intended purpose unless
it is located or carried out in close proximity to water. The term includes only docking
facilities, port facilities that are necessary for the loading and unloading of cargo or
passengers, and ship building and ship repair facilities, but does not include long-term
storage or related manufacturing facilities.
Habitable floor - means any floor usable for living purposes; which includes working,
sleeping, eating, cooking or recreation, or combination thereof. A floor used for storage
purposes only is not a "habitable floor".
Highest adjacent grade - means the highest natural elevation of the ground surface prior to
construction next to the proposed walls of a structure.
Levee - means a man-made structure, usually an earthen embankment, designed and
constructed in accordance with sound engineering practices to contain, control, or divert the
flow of water so as to provide protection from temporary flooding.
Levee system - means a flood protection system which consists of a levee, or levees, and
associated structures, such as closure and drainage devices, which are constructed and
operated in accordance with sound engineering practices.
Lowest floor - means the lowest floor of the lowest enclosed area (including basement). An
unfinished or flood-resistant enclosure, usable solely for parking or vehicles, building access
or storage in an area other than a basement area is not considered a building's lowest floor;
provided that such enclosure is not built so as to render the structure in violation of the
applicable non-elevation design requirement of Section 60.3 of the National Flood Insurance
Manufactured home/mobile home - means a structure transportable in one (1) or more
sections, which is built on a permanent chassis and is designed for use with or without a
permanent foundation when connected to the required utilities. For floodplain management
purposes, the term "manufactured home" also includes park trailers, travel trailers and other
similar vehicles placed on a site for greater than one hundred eighty (180) consecutive days.
For insurance purposes, the term "manufactured home" does not include park trailers, travel
trailers and other similar vehicles.
Mean sea level - means, for purposes of the National Flood Insurance Program, the National
Geodetic Vertical Datum (NGVD) of 1929 or other datum, to which base flood elevations
shown on a Community's Flood Insurance Rate Map are referenced.
New construction - means, for floodplain management purposes, structures for which the "start of construction" commenced on or after the effective date of a floodplain management regulation adopted by a community.
Start of construction - (for other than new construction or substantial improvements under the
Coastal Barrier Resources Act (Pub. L. 97-348), includes substantial improvement and
means the date the building permit was issued, provided the actual start of construction,
repair, reconstruction, placement or other improvement was within one hundred eighty (180)
days of the permit date. The actual start means either the first placement of permanent
construction of a structure on a site, such as the pouring of slab or footings, the installation of
piles, the construction of columns, or any work beyond the stage of excavation; or the
placement of a manufactured home on a foundation. Permanent construction does not
include land preparation, such as clearing, grading and filling; nor does it include the
installation of streets and/or walkways; nor does it include excavation for basement, footings,
piers or foundations or the erection of temporary forms; nor does it include the installation on
the property of accessory buildings, such as garages or sheds not occupied as dwelling units
or not part of the main structure.
Substantial improvement - means any repair, reconstruction or improvement of a structure,
the cost of which equals or exceeds fifty (50%) percent of the market value of the structure
(1) Before the improvement or repair is started, or
(2) If the structure has been damaged and is being restored, before the damage occurred.
For the purposes of this definition "substantial improvement" is considered to occur when the first alteration of any wall, ceiling, floor or other structural part of the building commences, whether or not the alteration affects external dimensions of the structure. The term does not include either:
(1) Any project for improvement of a structure to comply with existing state or local health,
sanitary, or safety code specifications which are solely necessary to assure safe living
(2) Any alterations of a structure listed on the National Register of Historic Places or State Inventory of Historic Places.
Variance - is a grant of relief to a person from the requirements of this Ordinance when specific enforcement would result in unnecessary hardship. A variance, therefore, permits construction or development in a manner otherwise prohibited by this Ordinance. (For full requirements, see Section 60.6 of the National Flood Insurance Program regulations.)
the elevation certificate, other certifications, or other evidence of compliance required in
Section 60.3(b)(5), (c)(4), (c)(10), (d)(3), (e)(2), (e)(4), or (e)(5) is presumed to be in violation
until such time as that documentation is provided.
Water surface elevation - means the height, in relation to the National Geodetic Vertical
Datum (NGVD) of 1929 (or other datum, where specified), of floods of various magnitudes
and frequencies in the floodplains of coastal or riverine areas. (Ord. No. 610, adopted
12/19/74; Ord. No. 611, adopted 01/16/75; Ord. No. 791, adopted 02/16/78; Ord. No. 87-770,
adopted 02/19/87; Ord. No. 89-1053, adopted 03/16/89)