CRESTVIEW — The Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency issued a preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Map and Flood Insurance Study report for Okaloosa County.

The report reflects proposed flood hazard determinations within Okaloosa County. These determinations may include the addition or modification of base flood elevations, base flood depths, Special Flood Hazard Area boundaries or zone designations, or the regulatory floodway. 

These determinations are the basis for floodplain management measures that the county and municipalities are required to either adopt or show evidence of being already in effect to qualify or remain qualified for participation in the National Flood Insurance Program.

The flood information link at www.co.okaloosa.fl.us has maps that show whether a property:

•Is in a flood zone

•Is removed from a flood zone

•Has its existing flood zone designation modified

Before determinations shown on the preliminary map are effective, there is a 90-day period provided for appeals. The period began Feb. 22 and ends May 22. Appeals must be filed on forms provided at http://portal.nwfwmdfloodmaps.com/meetingdocuments.html. (Click on “Property Owner Appeal Petition Direction and Form.")

County commissioners have designated the Okaloosa County Growth Management Department as the central location to receive appeals regarding unincorporated areas. Send appeals and supporting scientific and technical information, as required by FEMA, for unincorporated properties to: Okaloosa County Growth Management Department, 1250 N. Eglin Parkway, Shalimar, FL 32579.

In addition, email Okaloosa Planning Coordinator, Sherry Reed, sreed@co.okaloosa.fl.us, if you have appeals and supporting scientific and technical information for unincorporated area properties.

Owners of properties within incorporated areas should contact their city or town government.

See the Northwest Florida Water Management District website, http://portal.nwfwmdfloodmaps.com/, for more information on properties in a flood zone or those with a changed flood designation.