§ 155.010 DEFINITIONS.
   Unless specifically defined below, words or phrases used in this chapter shall be interpreted so as to give them the meaning they have in common usage and to give this chapter its most reasonable application.
   A ZONE. Portions of the SFHA in which the principal source of flooding is runoff from rainfall, snowmelt, or a combination of both. In A zones, floodwaters may move slowly or rapidly, but waves are usually not a significant threat to buildings. These areas are labeled as Zone A, Zone AE, Zones A1-A30, Zone AO, Zone AH, Zone AR and Zone A99 on a FIRM. The definitions are presented below:
      (1)   ZONE A. Areas subject to inundation by the one-percent annual chance flood event. Because detailed hydraulic analyses have not been performed, no base flood elevation or depths are shown.
      (2)   ZONE AE and A1-A30. Areas subject to inundation by the one-percent annual chance flood event determined by detailed methods. Base flood elevations are shown within these zones. (Zone AE is on new and revised maps in place of Zones A1-A30.)
      (3)   ZONE AO. Areas subject to inundation by one-percent annual chance shallow flooding (usually sheet flow on sloping terrain) where average depths are between one and three feet. Average flood depths derived from detailed hydraulic analyses are shown within this zone.
      (4)   ZONE AH. Areas subject to inundation by one-percent annual chance shallow flooding (usually areas of ponding) where average depths are between one and three feet. Average flood depths derived from detailed hydraulic analyses are shown within this zone.
      (5)   ZONE AR. Areas that result from the decertification of a previously accredited flood protection system that is determined to be in the process of being restored to provide base flood protection.
      (6)   ZONE A99. Areas subject to inundation by the one-percent annual chance flood event, but which will ultimately be protected upon completion of an under-construction federal flood protection system. These are areas of special flood hazard where enough progress has been made on the construction of a protection system, such as dikes, dams, and levees, to consider it complete for insurance rating purposes. Zone A99 may only be used when the flood protection system has reached specified statutory progress toward completion. No base flood elevations or depths are shown.
   ACCESSORY STRUCTURE (APPURTENANT STRUCTURE). A structure with a floor area 400 square feet or less that is located on the same parcel of property as the principal structure and the use of which is incidental to the use of the principal structure; an accessory structure specifically excludes structures used for human habitation.
      (1)   Accessory structures are considered walled and roofed where the structure includes at least two outside rigid walls and a fully secured roof.
      (2)   Examples of accessory structures include but are not necessarily limited to two-car detached garages (or smaller), carports, storage and tool sheds, and small boathouses.
      (3)   The following may have uses that are incidental or accessory to the principal structure on a parcel but are generally not considered to be accessory structures by the NFIP:
         (a)   Structures in which any portion is used for human habitation, whether as a permanent residence or as temporary or seasonal living quarters, such as a detached garage or carriage house that includes an apartment or guest quarters, or a detached guest house on the same parcel as a principal residence;
         (b)   Structures used by the public, such as a place of employment or entertainment; and
         (c)   Development that does not meet the NFIP definition of a structure for floodplain management purposes. Examples includes, but are not necessarily limited to, a gazebo, pavilion, picnic shelter, or carport that is open on all sides (roofed but not walled).
   ADDITION (TO AN EXISTING STRUCTURE). Any walled and roofed expansion to the perimeter of a structure in which the addition is connected by a common load-bearing wall other than a firewall. Any walled and roofed addition, which is connected by a firewall or is separated by independent perimeter load-bearing walls, is new construction.
   ALTERATION OF WATERCOURSE. A dam, impoundment, channel relocation, change in channel alignment, channelization, or change in cross-sectional area of the channel or the channel capacity, or any other modification which may alter, impede, retard or change the direction and/or velocity of the flow of water during conditions of the base flood.
   APPEAL. A request for a review of the Floodplain Administrator’s interpretation of any provision of this chapter.
   AREA OF SPECIAL FLOOD HAZARD. The land within a community subject to a 1% or greater chance of being flooded in any given year.
   BASE FLOOD. The flood having a one- percent chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year. The base floor may also be referred to the one-percent annual chance floor or 100-year flood.
   BASE FLOOD ELEVATION (BFE). The water surface elevation of the base flood in relation to a specified datum, usually the North American Vertical Datum of 1988.
   BASEMENT. That portion of a structure having its floor sub-grade (below ground level) on all sides.
   BEST AVAILABLE FLOOD LAYER (BAFL). Floodplain studies and any corresponding floodplain maps prepared and/or approved by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources which provide base flood elevation information, floodplain limits, and/or floodway delineations for flood hazards identified by approximate studies on the currently effective FIRM (Zone A) and/or for waterways where the flood hazard is not identified on available floodplain mapping.
   COMMUNITY. A political entity that has the authority to adopt and enforce floodplain ordinances for the area under its jurisdiction.
   CRITICAL FACILITY. A facility for which even a slight chance of flooding might be too great. Critical facilities include, but are not limited to, schools, nursing homes, hospitals, police, fire, and emergency response installations, installations which produce, use or store hazardous materials or hazardous waste.
      (1)   Any man-made change to improved or unimproved real estate including but not limited to:
         (a)   Construction, reconstruction, or placement of a structure or any addition to a structure;
         (b)   Installing a manufactured home on a site, preparing a site for a manufactured home or installing a recreational vehicle on a site for more than 180 days;
         (c)   Installing utilities, erection of walls and fences, construction of roads, or similar projects;
         (d)   Construction of flood control structures such as levees, dikes, dams, channel improvements, etc.;
         (e)   Mining, dredging, filling, grading, excavation, or drilling operations;
         (f)   Construction and/or reconstruction of boat lifts, docks, piers, and seawalls;
         (g)   Construction and/or reconstruction of bridges or culverts;
         (h)   Storage of materials; or
         (i)   Any other activity that might change the direction, height, or velocity of flood or surface waters.
      (2)   Development does not include activities such as the maintenance of existing structures and facilities such as painting, re-roofing; resurfacing roads; or gardening, plowing, and similar agricultural practices that do not involve filling, grading, excavation, or the construction of permanent structures.
   ELEVATED STRUCTURE. A non-basement structure built to have the lowest floor elevated above the ground level by means of fill, solid foundation perimeter walls, filled stem wall foundations (also called chain walls), pilings, or columns (posts and piers).
   ELEVATION CERTIFICATE. A FEMA form that is routinely reviewed and approved by the White House Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork Reduction Act, that is encouraged to be used to collect certified elevation information.
   ENCLOSED AREA (enclosure). Is an area of a structure enclosed by walls on all sides.
   EXISTING MANUFACTURED HOME PARK or SUBDIVISION. A manufactured home park or subdivision for which the construction of facilities for servicing the lots on which the manufactured homes are to be affixed (including, at a minimum, the installation of utilities, the construction of streets, and either final site grading or the pouring of concrete pads) is completed before the effective date of the community’s first floodplain ordinance.
   EXPANSION TO AN EXISTING MANUFACTURED HOME PARK OR SUBDIVISION. The preparation of additional sites by the construction of facilities for servicing the lots on which the manufactured homes are to be affixed (including the installation of utilities, the construction of streets, and either final site grading or the pouring of concrete pads).
   FEMA. The Federal Emergency Management Agency.
   FILL. For floodplain management purposes, means any material deposited or placed which has the effect of raising the level of ground surface above the natural grade elevation. Fill material included but is not limited to consolidated material such as concrete and brick and unconsolidated material such as soil, sand, and stone.
      (1)   A general and temporary condition of partial or complete inundation of normally dry land areas from:
         (a)   The overflow of inland or tidal waters.
         (b)   The unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source.
         (c)   Mudslides (i.e., mudflows) which are proximately caused by flooding and are akin to a river of liquid and flowing mud on the surfaces of normally dry land areas, as when earth is carried by a current of water and deposited along the path of the current.
      (2)   FLOOD OR FLOODING also includes the collapse or subsidence of land along the shore of a lake or similar body of water as a result of erosion or undermining caused by waves or current of water exceeding anticipated cyclical levels that result in a flood as defined above.
   FLOOD HAZARD AREA. Areas subject to the 1% annual chance flood (see SPECIAL FLOOD HAZARD AREA).
   FLOOD INSURANCE RATE MAP (FIRM). An official map of a community, on which FEMA has delineated both the areas of special flood hazard and the risk premium zones applicable to the community. A FIRM that has been made available digitally is called a Digital Flood Insurance Rate Map (DFIRM).
   FLOOD INSURANCE STUDY (FIS). The official hydraulic and hydrologic report provided by FEMA. The report contains flood profiles, as well as the FIRM, FBFM (where applicable), and the water surface elevation of the base flood.
   FLOOD PRONE AREA. Any land area acknowledged by a community as being susceptible to inundation by water from any source. (See FLOODPLAIN.)
   FLOOD PROTECTION GRADE (FPG). The elevation of the regulatory flood plus two feet at any given location in the SFHA. (See FREEBOARD.)
   FLOODPLAIN or FLOOD PRONE AREA. Any land area susceptible to being inundated by water from any source (see FLOOD).
   FLOODPLAIN MANAGEMENT. The operation of an overall program of corrective and preventive measures for reducing flood damage and preserving and enhancing, where possible, natural resources in the floodplain, including but not limited to emergency preparedness plans, flood control works, floodplain management regulations, and open space plans.
   FLOODPLAIN MANAGEMENT REGULATIONS. This chapter and other zoning ordinances, subdivision regulations, building codes, health regulations, special purpose ordinances, (such as a floodplain ordinance, grading ordinance and erosion control ordinance), and other applications of police power which control development in flood-prone areas. This term describes federal, state, or local regulations in any combination thereof, which provide standards for preventing and reducing flood loss and damage.
   FLOODPROOFING (DRY FLOODPROOFING). A method of protecting a structure that ensures that the structure, together with attendant utilities and sanitary facilities, is watertight to the floodproofed design elevation with walls that are substantially impermeable to the passage of water. All structural components of these walls are capable of resisting hydrostatic and hydrodynamic flood forces, including the effects of buoyancy, and anticipated debris impact forces.
   FLOODPROOFING CERTIFICATE. A form used to certify compliance for non-residential structures as an alternative to elevating structures to or above the FPG. This certification must be by a registered professional engineer or architect.
   FLOODWAY. The channel of a river or other watercourse and the adjacent land areas that must be reserved in order to discharge the base flood without cumulative increasing the water surface elevation more than a designated height.
   FREEBOARD. A factor of safety, usually expressed in feet above the BFE, which is applied for the purposes of floodplain management. It is used to compensate for the many unknown factors that could contribute to flood heights greater than those calculated for the base flood.
   FRINGE. Those portions of the floodplain lying outside the floodway.
   FUNCTIONALLY DEPENDENT USE. A use in 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.
   HARDSHIP. (As related to variances of this chapter) means the exceptional hardship that would result from a failure to grant the requested variance. The City of Decatur Board of Zoning Appeals requires that the variance is exceptional, unusual, and peculiar to the property involved. Mere economic or financial hardship alone is not exceptional. Inconvenience, aesthetic considerations, physical handicaps, personal preferences, or the disapproval of one’s neighbors likewise cannot, as a rule, qualify as an exceptional hardship. All of these problems can be resolved through other means without granting a variance, even if the alternative is more expensive, or requires the property owner to build elsewhere or put the parcel to a different use than originally intended.
   HIGHEST ADJACENT GRADE. The highest natural elevation of the ground surface, prior to the start of construction, next to the proposed walls of a structure.
   HISTORIC STRUCTURES. Any structure that is:
      (1)   Listed individually in the National Register of Historic Places (a listing maintained by the Department of the Interior) or preliminarily determined by the Secretary of the Interior as meeting the requirements for individual listing on the National Register;
      (2)   Certified or preliminarily determined by the Secretary of the Interior as contributing to the historical significance of a registered historic district or a district preliminarily determined by the Secretary to qualify as a registered historic district;
      (3)   Individually listed on a state inventory of historic places in states with historic preservation programs which have been approved by the Secretary of the Interior; or
      (4)   Individually listed on a local inventory of historic places in communities with historic preservation programs that have been certified by (a) an approved state program as determined by the Secretary of Interior; or (b) directly by the Secretary of Interior in states without approved programs.
   HYDROLOGIC AND HYDRAULIC ENGINEERING ANALYSIS. Analyses performed by a professional engineer licensed by the State of Indiana, in accordance with standard engineering practices that are accepted by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and FEMA, used to determine the base flood, other frequency floods, flood elevations, floodway information, and boundaries, and flood profiles.
   INTERNATIONAL CODE COUNCIL-EVALUATION SERVICE (ICC-ES) REPORT. A document that presents the findings, conclusions, and recommendations from a particular evaluation. ICC-ES reports provide information about what code requirements or acceptance criteria were used to evaluate a product, and how the product should be identified, installed.
   LETTER OF FINAL DETERMINATION (LFD). A letter issued by FEMA during the mapping update process which establishes final elevations and provides the new flood map and flood study to the community. The LFD initiates the six-month adoption period. The community must adopt or amend its floodplain management regulations during this six-month period unless the community has previously incorporated an automatic adoption clause.
   LETTER OF MAP CHANGE (LOMC). A general term used to refer to the several types of revisions and amendments to FEMA maps that can be accomplished by letter. They include Conditional Letter of Map Revision (CLOMR), Conditional Letter of Map Revisions Based on Fill (CLOMR-F), Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA), Letter of Map Amendment Out as Shown (LOMA-OAS), Letter of Map Revision (LOMR), and Letter of Map Revision based on Fill (LOMR-F). The definitions are presented below:
      (1)   CONDITIONAL LETTER OF MAP REVISION (CLOMR). FEMA’s comment on a proposed project that would, upon construction, result in modification of the SFRA through the placement of fill outside the existing regulatory floodway.
      (2)   CONDITIONAL LETTER OF MAP REVISION BASED ON FILL (CLOMR-F). A letter from FEMA stating that a proposed structure that will be elevated by fill would not be inundated by the base flood.
      (3)   LETTER OF MAP AMENDMENT (LOMA). An amendment by letter to the currently effective FEMA map that establishes that a building or land is not located in a SFHA through the submittal of property specific elevation data. A LOMA is only issued by FEMA.
      (4)   LETTER OF MAP AMENDMENT OUT AS SHOWN (LOMA-OAS). An official determination by FEMA that states the property or building is correctly shown outside the SFRA as shown on an effective NFIP map. Therefore, the mandatory flood insurance requirement does not apply. An out-as-shown determination does not require elevations.
      (5)   LETTER OF MAP REVISION (LOMR). An official revision to the currently effective FEMA map. It is issued by FEMA and changes flood zones, delineations, and elevations.
      (6)   LETTER OF MAP REVISION BASED ON FILL (LOMR-F). FEMA’s modification of the SFRA shown on the FIRM based on the placement of fill outside the existing regulatory floodway.
   LOWEST ADJACENT GRADE. The lowest elevation, after completion of construction, of the ground, sidewalk, patio, deck support, or basement entryway immediately next to the structure.
   LOWEST FLOOR. The lowest elevation described among the following:
      (1)   The top of the lowest level of the structure.
      (2)   The top of the basement floor.
      (3)   The top of the garage floor, if the garage is the lowest level of the structure.
      (4)   The top of the first floor of a structure elevated on pilings or pillars.
      (5)   The top of the floor level of any enclosure, other than a basement, below an elevated structure where the walls of the enclosure provide any resistance to the flow of flood waters. Designs for meeting the flood opening requirement must either be certified by a registered professional engineer or architect or meet or exceed the following criteria:
         (a)   The walls are designed to automatically equalize the hydrostatic flood forces on the walls by allowing for the entry and exit of flood waters by providing a minimum of two openings (in addition to doorways and windows) in a minimum of two exterior walls; if a structure has more than one enclosed area, each shall have openings on exterior walls;
         (b)   The total net area of all openings shall be at least one square inch for every one square foot of enclosed area; the bottom of all such openings shall be no higher than one foot above the exterior grade or the interior grade immediately beneath each opening, whichever is higher; and
         (c)   Such enclosed space shall be usable solely for the parking of vehicles and building access.
   MANUFACTURED HOME. A structure, transportable in one or more sections, which is built on a permanent chassis and is designed for use with or without a permanent foundation when attached to the required utilities. The term MANUFACTURED HOME does not include a RECREATIONAL VEHICLE.
   MANUFACTURED HOME PARK or SUBDIVISION. A parcel (or contiguous parcels) of land divided into two or more manufactured home lots for rent or sale.
   MARKET VALUE. The building value, excluding the land (as agreed to between a willing buyer and seller), as established by what the local real estate market will bear. MARKET VALUE can be established by independent certified appraisal, replacement cost depreciated by age of building (actual cash value), or adjusted assessed values.
   MITIGATION. Sustained actions taken to reduce or eliminate long-term risk to people and property from hazards and their effects. The purpose of mitigation is twofold: to protect people and structures, and to minimize the cost of disaster response and recovery.
   NATURAL GRADE. For floodplain management purposes means the elevation of the undisturbed natural surface of the ground. Fill placed prior to the date of the initial identification of the flood hazard on a FEMA map is also considered natural grade.
   NEW CONSTRUCTION. Any structure for which the start of construction commenced after the effective date of the community's first floodplain ordinance.
   NEW MANUFACTURED HOME PARK or SUBDIVISION. A manufactured home park or subdivision for which the construction of facilities for servicing the lots on which the manufactured homes are to be affixed (including at a minimum, the installation of utilities, the construction of streets, and either final site grading or the pouring of concrete pads) is completed on or after the effective date of the community's first floodplain ordinance.
   NORTH AMERICAN VERTICAL DATUM OF 1988 (NAVD 88). As adopted in 1993 is a vertical control datum used as a reference for establishing varying elevations within the floodplain.
   OBSTRUCTION. Includes, but is not limited to, any dam, wall, wharf, embankment, levee, dike, pile, abutment, protection, excavation, canalization, bridge, conduit, culvert, building, wire, fence, rock, gravel, refuse, fill, structure, vegetation, or other material in, along, across or projecting into any watercourse which may alter, impede, retard or change the direction and/or velocity of the flow of water; or due to its location, its propensity to snare or collect debris carried by the flow of water, or its likelihood of being carried downstream.
   ONE-PERCENT ANNUAL CHANCE FLOOD. The flood that has a 1% chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year. See REGULATORY FLOOD.
   PHYSICAL MAP REVISION (PMR). An official republication of a community's FEMA map to effect changes to base (one-percent annual chance) flood elevations, floodplain boundary delineations, regulatory floodways, and planimetric features. These changes typically occur as a result of structural works or improvements, annexations resulting in additional flood hazard areas, or correction to base flood elevations or SFHAs.
   PREFABRICATED BUILDING. A building that is manufactured and constructed using prefabrication. It consists of factory-made components or units that are transported and assembled on-site to form the complete building.
   PRINCIPALLY ABOVE GROUND. At least 51% of the actual cash value of the structure, less land value, is above ground.
   RECREATIONAL VEHICLE. A vehicle which is (1) built on a single chassis; (2) 400 square feet or less when measured at the largest horizontal projections; (3) designed to be self-propelled or permanently towable by a light duty truck; and (4) designed primarily not for use as a permanent dwelling, but as quarters for recreational camping, travel, or seasonal use.
   REGULATORY FLOOD. The flood having a 1% chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year, as calculated by a method and procedure that is acceptable to and approved by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The regulatory flood elevation at any location is as defined in § 155.021. The REGULATORY FLOOD is also known by the term BASE FLOOD, ONE-PERCENT ANNUAL CHANCE FLOOD, and 100 YEAR FLOOD.
   REPETITIVE LOSS. Flood-related damages sustained by a structure on two separate occasions during a ten-year period for which the cost of repairs at the time of each such flood event, on the average, equaled or exceeded 25% of the market value of the structure before the damage occurred.
   RIVERINE. Relating to, formed by, or resembling a river (including tributaries), stream, brook, etc.
   SOLID WASTE DISPOSAL FACILITY. Any facility involved in the storage or disposal of non-liquid, non-soluble materials ranging from municipal garbage to industrial wastes that contain complex and sometimes hazardous substances. Solid waste also included sewage sludge, agricultural refuse, demolition wastes, mining wastes, and liquids and gases stored in containers.
   SPECIAL FLOOD HAZARD AREA (SFHA).  Those lands within the jurisdiction of the city subject to inundation by the regulatory flood. The SFHAs of the City subject to a 1% or greater chance of flooding in any given year. Special flood hazard areas are designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency on Flood Insurance Rate Maps, Flood Insurance Studies, as Zones A, AE, AH, AO, A99, or VE. The SFHA includes areas that are flood prone and designated from other federal, state or local sources of data including but not limited to best available flood layer maps provided by or approved by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, historical flood information reflecting high water marks, previous flood inundation areas, and flood prone soils associated with a watercourse.
   START OF CONSTRUCTION. Includes substantial improvement, and means the date the building permit was issued, provided the actual start of construction, repair, reconstruction, or improvement was within 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 a 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 a basement, footings, piers, 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. For a substantial improvement, the actual start of construction means the first alteration of any wall, ceiling, floor, or other structural part of a building, whether or not that alteration affects the external dimensions of the building.
   STRUCTURE. A structure that is principally above ground and is enclosed by walls and a roof. The term includes a gas or liquid storage tank, a manufactured home, or a prefabricated building. The term also includes recreational vehicles to be installed on a site for more than 180 days.
   SUBSTANTIAL DAMAGE. Damage of any origin sustained by a structure whereby the cost of restoring the structure to its before damaged condition would equal or exceed 40% of the market value of the structure before the damage occurred.
   SUBSTANTIAL IMPROVEMENT. Any reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition, or other improvement of a structure, the cost of which equals or exceeds 40% of the market value of the structure before the start of construction of the improvement. This term includes structures that have incurred repetitive loss or substantial damage regardless of the actual repair work performed. The term does not include improvements of structures to correct existing violations of state or local health, sanitary, or safety code requirements.
   VARIANCE. A grant of relief from the requirements of this chapter, consistent with the variance conditions herein.
   VIOLATION. The failure of a structure or other development to be fully compliant with this chapter.
   WALLED AND ROOFED. A building that has two or more rigid walls and a fully secured roof and is affixed to a permanent site.
   WATERCOURSE. A lake, river, creek, stream, wash, channel or other topographic feature on or over which waters flow at least periodically. WATERCOURSE includes specifically designated areas in which substantial flood damage may occur.
(Ord. 2017-7, passed 8-15-2017; Ord. 2022-10, passed 6-21-2022)