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Options to re-examine FEMA flood maps discussed

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

IKESTON -- The Sikeston City Council discussed further developments of the Federal Emergency Management Association's flood maps Monday.

One of the ideas discussed was bringing in an out of town engineering firm to re-examine the maps FEMA submitted.

While the Council earlier this month approved an amended version of a bill accepting FEMA's new flood plain maps, the bill questioned the accuracy of FEMA's mapping. In particular, city officials dispute the designation of some additional areas of Sikeston as being in flood zones, particularly land located on the Sikeston ridge.

John Chittenden of Waters Engineering in Sikeston recommended two companies to perform the work: Amec Engineering and Stantec. "I recommend that we hire a heavy hitter," he said.

Chittenden recommended Amec because he said he believed they would be better "if you want it done fast and inexpensive."

"The only way we can fight this is to get an engineer in there," said mayor Jerry Pullen. "Let's let the engineers tell us" how to fix the problem.

"We have to prove FEMA's numbers wrong," said city manager Doug Friend. "FEMA's got their numbers, and we've got to debunk those numbers."

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