The Federal Emergency Management Agency has told the city its levees in Natomas no longer meet minimum standards. So FEMA plans to knock the neighborhood’s flood protection status down a notch.
Sacramento Mayor Heather Fargo says the status the city expects to get will severely limit growth until the levees get revamped.
“It says that everyone is required to buy flood insurance – and not at the cheaper rate, at the higher rate – and that any development that would go forward has to be elevated by three feet. … So it in a sense, in some ways, is a semi-moratorium because of what it requires.”
Stein Buer with the Sacramento Area Flood Control Agency says it’s important to move quickly to fix the levees. The current plan, if all goes well, would bring the levees back up to the minimal standard of 100-year flood protection by 2010.