(a)   Authority to Implement Flood Damage Chapter. Article XVI11, §3, of the Constitution of the State of Ohio grants a municipal corporation the legal authority to adopt land use and control measures aimed at promoting the health, safety, and the general welfare of its residents. Therefore, the City Council of the City of Findlay, Hancock County, State of Ohio, does ordain the following Flood Damage Reduction chapter.
   (b)   Findings of Fact. The City of Findlay has special flood hazard areas that are subject to periodic inundation, which could result in the loss of life and property, health and safety hazards, disruption of commerce and government services, extraordinary public expenditures for flood protection and relief, and impairment of the City's tax base. In addition, structures that are inadequately elevated, floodproofed, or otherwise unprotected from flood damage also contribute to flood loss. In order to minimize the threat of such damage, and to achieve the purposes set for the flood damage reduction, this chapter is adopted.
   (c)   Statement of Purpose. It is the purpose of this flood damage reduction chapter to promote the public health, safety, and general welfare, and to:
      (1)   Protect human, animal, and aquatic life and health;
      (2)   Minimize expenditure of public money for costly flood control projects;
      (3)   Minimize the need for rescue and relief efforts associated with flooding and generally undertaken at the expense of the general public;
      (4)   Minimize prolonged interruptions;
      (5)   Minimize damage to public facilities and utilities, such as water, wastewater, and gas mains, electric, telephone, streets and bridges located in areas of special flood hazard;
      (6)   Help maintain a stable tax base by providing for the proper use and development of areas of special flood hazard, so as to protect property and to minimize future flood blight areas;
      (7)   Ensure that those who occupy the areas of special flood hazard assume responsibility for their actions and decisions;
      (8)   Minimize the impact of development on properties adjacent to, within, and near flood-prone areas;
      (9)   Ensure that the flood storage and conveyance functions of the floodplain are maintained;
      (10)   Minimize the impact of development on the natural, beneficial values of the floodplain;
      (11)   Prevent floodplain uses that are either hazardous or environmentally incompatible; and
      (12)   Meet community participation requirements of the National Flood Insurance Program [NFIP].
   (d)   Methods of Reducing Flood Loss. In order to accomplish its purposes, this ordinance includes methods and provisions for:
      (1)   Restricting or prohibiting uses which are dangerous to health, safety, and property, due to water hazards; or which result in damaging increases in flood eights or velocities;
      (2)    Requiring that uses vulnerable to floods, including facilities that serve such uses, be protected against flood damage at the time of initial construction;
      (3)    Controlling the aeration of natural floodplains, stream channels, and natural protective barriers, which help accommodate or channel flood waters;
      (4)    Controlling filling, grading, dredging, excavating, and other development which could increase flood damage; and
      (5)    Preventing or regulating the construction of flood barriers that would unnaturally divert flood waters, or which could increase flood hazards in other areas.
   (e)   Lands to Which This Chapter Applies. This chapter shall apply to all areas of special flood hazard within the jurisdiction of the City of Findlay, as identified in subsection (f) hereof, including any additional areas of special flood hazard annexed by the City of Findlay after the effective date of this section.
   (f)   Basis for Establishing the Areas of Special Flood Hazard.
      (1)   For the purposes of this chapter, the following studies and maps, generated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency [FEMA], are adopted:
         A.   Flood Insurance Study Hancock County, Ohio and Incorporated Areas effective June 2, 2011.
         B.   Flood Insurance Rate Map Hancock County, Ohio and Incorporated Areas effective June 2, 2011.
         C.   Other studies and/or maps which could be relied on for establishment of the flood protection elevation, delineation of the 100-year floodplain, floodways, or delineation of other areas of special flood hazard.
         D.   Any hydrologic and hydraulic engineering analyses generated by a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Ohio, which analysis has been approved by the City of Findlay, pursuant to Section 1351.04(a)(3), Subdivisions and Large Scale Developments.
            (Ord. 2011-031. Passed 5-3-11.)
      (2)    Any revisions to the aforementioned maps and/or studies are hereby adopted by reference to them, and declared to be part of this chapter. These studies, maps, letters, and bulletins are on file at the City of Findlay Municipal Building, Engineering Department, 318 Dorney Plaza, Findlay, Ohio 45840.
   (g)   Abrogation and Greater Restrictions. The regulations contained in this chapter are not intended to repeal any existing ordinances, including Subdivision Regulations, or Zoning Codes. In the event of conflict between the provisions of this chapter and any other ordinance, the more restrictive shall be followed. The provisions of this chapter shall not impair any deed restrictions, covenant, or easement, but the land subject to such interests shall also be governed by this chapter.
   (h)   Interpretation. In the interpretation and application of this chapter, all provisions shall be:
      (1)   Considered to be minimum requirements;
      (2)   Liberally construed in favor of the City Council of the City of Findlay;
      (3)   Deemed neither to limit nor to repeal any other powers granted under Ohio statute.
   Where a provision of this chapter might be in conflict with an Ohio statute, federal statute, or other Ohio or federal regulation, such Ohio or federal statute or regulation shall take precedence over this chapter.
(Ord. 2006-067. Passed 9-5-06.)
   (i)   Warning and Disclaimer of Liability. The degree of flood protection required by this chapter is considered reasonable for regulatory purposes, and is based on scientific and engineering considerations. Larger floods can and will occur on rare occasions. Flood heights might be increased by manmade or natural causes. The provisions of this chapter do not imply that land outside the areas of special flood hazard, or uses permitted within such areas, will be free from flooding or flood damage. The provisions of this chapter shall not create liability on the part of the City of Findlay, any officer or employee of it; Mutual Aid Floodplain Administrator or their Agency; or the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), for any flood damage that results from reliance on these regulations or any administrative decision lawfully made under this chapter.
(Ord. 2009-106. Passed 12-1-09.)
   (j)   Severability. Should any section or provision of this chapter be declared by courts of competent jurisdiction to be unconstitutional or invalid, such decision shall not affect the validity of this chapter as a whole, or any part of it, other than the section or provision declared to be unconstitutional or otherwise invalid.
(Ord. 2006-067. Passed 9-5-06.)