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Unless specifically defined below, words and phrases used in this article shall be interpreted so as to give this article its most reasonable application. For the purposes of this article, the following words and phrases are defined as follows:
"Adjacent property" includes any surface tract, regardless of whether such surface tract is entirely within the City, so long as a portion of said surface tract is located within the City, which shares an immediate and common boundary up or down stream to the property that is the subject of the application for Floodplain Permit. Adjacent property also includes all other property that may be affected by flooding.
"Adversely affect adjacent properties" means to adversely affect a property, the increase in the elevation of the 100-year base flood elevation must be more than one foot at any point. Stated conversely, if the effect is that the 100-year flood base flood elevation rises one foot or less, the property is not affected. This standard does not apply to the Floodway. If prior permit(s) have been approved in the same area of the Floodplain, the definition would include the cumulative impact to the base flood elevation.
"Appurtenant structure" means a structure on the same parcel of property as the principal structure and the use of which is incidental and used for storage only to the use of the principal structure. This does not include a gas or liquid storage tank. These structures cannot be used as living space.
"Base flood" means the flood having a one percent (1%) chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year.
"Base flood elevation" (BFE) means the water surface elevation of the base flood in relation to the datum specified on the applicable flood insurance rate map. For the purposes of this article, the one hundred (100) year flood or one percent (1%) or greater chance of flooding in any given year.
"Basement" means any area of the building having its floor sub grade (below ground level) on all sides.
"Certificate of compliance" means a certification that the entire development, including the elevation of fill or the lowest floor of a structure is in compliance with all the provisions of this article.
"Compensatory storage " means an artificially excavated, hydraulically equivalent volume of storage within the special flood hazard area used to balance the loss of natural flood storage when artificial fill or structures are placed within the special flood hazard area.
"Contractor" means a person as defined in West Virginia Code 21-11-3, a person who in any capacity for compensation, other than as an employee of another, undertakes, offers to undertake, purports to have the capacity to undertake, or submits a bid to construct, alter, repair, add to, subtract from, improve, move, wreck or demolish any building, highway, road, railroad, structure or excavation associated with a project, development or improvement, or to do any part thereof, including the erection of scaffolding or other structures or works in connection therewith, where the cost of undertaking is two thousand five hundred dollars or more. Contractor includes a construction manager who performs management and counseling services on a construction project for a professional fee. Contractor does not include:
(A) One who merely furnishes materials or supplies without fabricating or consuming them in the construction project;
(B) A person who personally performs construction work on the site of real property which the person owns or leases whether for commercial or residential purposes;
(C) A person who is licensed or registered as a professional and who functions under the control of any other licensing or regulatory board, whose primary business is real estate sales, appraisal, development, management and maintenance, who acting in his respective professional capacity and any employee of such professional, acting in the course of his employment, performs any work which may be considered to be performing contracting work;
(D) A pest control operator licensed under the provisions of West Virginia Code 19-16A-7 to engage in the application of pesticides for hire, unless the operator also performs structural repairs exceeding one thousand dollars on property treated for insect pests; or
(E) A corporation, limited liability corporation, partnership or sole proprietorship whose primary purpose is to prepare construction plans and specifications used by the contractors defined in this section and who employs a full time registered architect licensed to practice in this State or a registered professional engineer licensed to practice in this State. Contractor also does not include employees of such corporation, partnership or sole proprietorship.
"Critical facility" means any facility in which even a slight chance of flooding is too great a threat. Typical critical facilities include hospitals, fire stations, police stations, storage of critical records, and similar facilities. These should be given special consideration when formulating regulatory alternatives and floodplain management plans. A critical facility should not be located in a special flood hazard area if at all possible. If a critical facility must be located in a special flood hazard area it should be provided a higher level of protection so that it can continue to function and provide services during a flood.
"Development" means any man-made change to improved or unimproved real property, including but not limited to buildings or other structures, mining, dredging, filling, grading, paving, excavation or drilling operations, oil/gas well sites, pads, pits, retention ponds, or storage of equipment or materials.
"Flood" means a general and temporary inundation of water in an area of normally dry land.
"Flood insurance rate map" (FIRM) means the official map on which the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has delineated both the special flood hazard areas and the risk premium zones applicable to the City. A FIRM that has been made available digitally is called a "digital flood insurance rate map" (DFIRM).
"Flood insurance study" means the official report in which FEMA has provided flood profiles, floodway information, and water surface elevations.
"Floodplain" means a relatively flat or low land area adjoining a river, stream, or watercourse which is subject to partial or complete inundation. Floodplain includes an area subject to the unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source.
"Floodplain Administrator" means a resident of West Virginia who has completed within one year of his or her appointment the State/FEMA sponsored National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Class 273 entitled "Managing Floodplain Development" and remains current with state required continuing education training pursuant to West Virginia Code 15-5-20a. In the absence of a formally appointed Floodplain Administrator, the duties set forth in this article for the Floodplain Administrator shall be temporarily fulfilled by the City Engineer or the Mayor.
"Floodway" means the channel of a river or other watercourse and the adjacent land area that must be reserved to discharge the base flood without increasing the water surface elevation of that flood more than one foot at any point.
"Flood Proofing" means any combination of structural and non-structural additions, changes, or adjustments to non-residential structures which reduce or eliminate flood damage to real property or improved real property, water, and sanitary facilities, structures, and its contents.
"Freeboard" means a factor of safety usually expressed in feet above a flood level or BFE for purposes of floodplain management. Freeboard tends to compensate for unknown factors that may contribute uncertainty to flood heights of any given flood and floodway condition, such as wave action, blockage at stream crossings, and increased runoff from urbanization of the watershed.
"Highest adjacent grade" (HAG) means the highest natural elevation of the ground surface immediately adjacent to the development or structure foundation, primarily used for purposes of insurance rating in approximated floodplains.
"Historic structure" means any structure that is:
(A) Listed individually in the National Register of Historic Places (a listing maintained by the Department of Interior) or preliminarily determined by the Secretary of the Interior as meeting the requirements for individual listing in the National Register;
(B) Certified or preliminarily determined by the Secretary of 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;
(C) 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
(D) Individually listed on a local inventory of historic places in communities with historic preservation programs that have been certified either by an approved state program as determined by the Secretary of the Interior or directly by the Secretary of Interior in states without approved programs.
"Interested person or party" means
(A) The applicant;
(B) The owner(s) of the subject property;
(C) At least one adult residing in any residence on the subject property at the time the floodplain permit application is filed;
(D) Owners of any adjacent property; and
(E) At least one adult residing in any residence on the adjacent property at the time the floodplain permit application is filed.
"Licensed manufactured home dealer" means a business licensed to sell manufactured homes in the State of West Virginia as set forth in West Virginia Code.
"Licensed manufactured home installer" means a contractor licensed to install manufactured homes in the State of West Virginia as set forth in West Virginia Code.
"Licensed professional surveyor" means any person licensed by the West Virginia State Board of Examiners of Land Surveyors to engage in the practice of land surveying as defined in West Virginia Code.
"Lowest adjacent grade" (LAG) means the lowest natural elevation of the ground surface immediately adjacent to the proposed development or structure foundation. The primary use of the LAG is to determine whether the structure is located within a special flood hazard area by comparing it to the base flood elevation.
"Lowest floor" means the lowest floor of the lowest enclosed area, including basement. An unfinished enclosure constructed with flood resistant materials as defined in FEMA Technical Bulletin 2 and usable solely for parking of vehicles, building access, or storage in an area other than a basement area is not considered a building's lowest floor; provided, that such enclosure has proper flood openings and is not built so as to render the structure in violation of the applicable non-elevation design requirements of this article.
"Manufactured home" means 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 connected to the required utilities. Manufactured home does not include a recreational vehicle.
"New construction" means structures for which the start of construction commenced on or after the effective date of this article, including any subsequent improvements to such structures. Any construction within 180 days of permit issuance that was started before the effective date of this article is subject to the ordinance in effect at the time.
"One-hundred (100) year flood" means a flood that has one chance in one-hundred or a one percent or greater chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year.
"Person" means any individual or group of individuals, corporation, limited liability corporation, partnership, association, or other entity, including any state and local government or agency.
"Practice of engineering" means any service or creative work, as described in West Virginia Code 30-13-1 et seq., the adequate performance of which requires engineering education, training and experience in the application of special knowledge of the mathematical, physical and engineering sciences to such services or creative work as consultation, investigation, evaluation, planning and design of engineering works and systems; planning the use of land and water; teaching of advanced engineering subjects, engineering surveys and studies; and the review of construction for the purpose of assuring compliance with drawings and specifications any of which embraces such services or work, either public or private, in connection with any utilities, structures, buildings, machines, equipment, processes, work systems, projects and industrial or consumer products or equipment of a mechanical, electrical, hydraulic, pneumatic or thermal nature, insofar as they involve safeguarding life, health or property, and including such other professional services as may be necessary to the planning, progress and completion of any engineering services. Engineering surveys include all survey activities required to support the sound conception, planning, design, construction, maintenance and operation of engineered projects.
Any person who practices any branch of the profession of engineering or who, by verbal claim, sign, advertisement, letterhead, card or in any other way represents himself or herself to be a professional engineer, or by using another title implies that he or she is a professional engineer or that he or she is registered under West Virginia Code 30-13-1 et seq. or who holds himself or herself out as able to perform, or who performs any engineering service or work or any other service designated by the practitioner which is recognized as engineering, is considered to practice or offer to practice engineering within the meaning and intent of West Virginia Code 30-13-1 et seq.
"Principally above ground" means at least 51 percent of the actual cash value of a structure, less land value, is above ground.
"Professional" means any professional, including but not limited to a contractor, developer, engineer, architect, hydrologist, and land surveyor, acting in any capacity with respect to this article, who is licensed by the State of West Virginia, when certification or licensure from the State of West Virginia is so required.
"Reasonably safe from flooding" means that during the base flood, or any other known flooding by the Floodplain Administrator, water should not damage structures and any subsurface waters related to the base flood and should not damage existing or proposed structures. Ways of determining reasonably safe from flooding may be three feet above highest adjacent grade, above high-water marks from historic flooding, using topographic extrapolation from contour lines, or utilizing the advisory flood height data on the WV Flood Tool.
"Recreational vehicle" means a vehicle which is
(A) Built on a single chassis;
(B) 400 square feet or less when measured at the largest horizontal projection;
(C) Designated to be self-propelled or permanently towable by a light duty truck; and
(D) Designed primarily not for use as a permanent dwelling but as temporary living quarters for recreational, camping, travel, or seasonal use.
"Registered professional engineer" means a person who has been duly registered or licensed as a registered professional engineer by the West Virginia State Board of Registration for Professional Engineers as required by West Virginia Code Article 30-13.
"Remedy a violation" means to bring a structure or other development into compliance with the requirements of this article, or if full compliance is not possible, to reduce the adverse impact of the non-compliance to the greatest extent feasible.
"Special flood hazard area" means the land in the floodplain area subject to a one percent or greater chance of flooding in any given year. Special flood hazard areas are designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency in Flood Insurance Studies and on Flood Insurance Rate Maps as Zones A, AE, AO, A1-30, and A99. The term includes areas shown on other flood hazard maps that are specifically listed or otherwise described in this article.
"Start of construction" when calculating the starting time for expiration of a floodplain permit means the following: The date the floodplain permit was issued, including floodplain permit for substantial improvement or repair of substantial damage, provided the actual start of construction, repair, reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition, placement, or other improvement was within 180 days of the Floodplain Permit date. The actual start means either the first placement of permanent construction on a site, such as the pouring of slabs or footings, the installation of piles, the construction of columns, or any work beyond initial excavation, or the placement of a manufactured home on a foundation. Although a floodplain permit must be obtained prior to beginning, permanent construction does not include land preparation, such as clearing, grading, and filling, nor does it include the installation of streets or walkways, nor does it include excavation for a basement, footings, piers, or 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 an alteration, 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.
"State coordinating office" means the West Virginia Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.
"Stream" means any watercourse, whether natural or man-made, distinguishable by banks and a bed, regardless of its size, through which water flows continually or intermittently, regardless of its volume; a watercourse as defined in West Virginia Code 7-1-3u.
"Structure" means a walled and roofed building, including a gas or liquid storage tank that is principally above ground, as well as a manufactured home.
"Subdivision" means a development that includes a creation of individual land parcels for future sale. It does not include development where rights-of-way or easements are obtained and recorded.
"Subject property" includes the surface tract(s) upon which the proposed development is planned and for which the floodplain permit application is submitted.
"Substantial damage" means damage of any origin sustained by a structure whereby the cost of restoring the structure to its before damage condition would equal or exceed 50 percent of the fair market value of the structure before the damage occurred. Substantial damage also means cumulative flood-related damages sustained by a structure on two separate occasions during a 10-year period for which the cost of repairs at the time of each flood event equals or exceeds 25 percent of the fair market value of the structure before the damage occurred.
"Substantial improvement" means any repair, reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition, or other improvement of a structure, the cost of which equals or exceeds 50 percent of the fair market value of the structure before the start of construction of the improvement. It includes structures, which have incurred substantial damage regardless of the actual repair work performed. The term does not, however, include any project for improvement of a structure to correct existing violation(s) of state or local health, sanitary or safety code specifications which have been identified by a local code enforcement official and which are the minimum necessary to assure safe living conditions. Historic structures undergoing repair or rehabilitation that would constitute a substantial improvement must comply with all City Code requirements that do not preclude the structure's continued designation as a historic structure. Documentation that a specific City Code requirement will cause removal of the structure from the National Register of Historic Places or the State Inventory of Historic Places must be obtained from the Secretary of the Interior or the State Historic Preservation Officer. Any exemption from City Code requirements will be the minimum necessary to preserve the historic character and design of the structure. For the purpose of this definition, improvement is considered to occur when the first alteration of any wall, ceiling, floor, or other structural part of the building commences whether or not the alteration affects the external dimensions of the structure.
"Top of bank" is indicated by the lines depicted on the FIRM maps delineating each side of a stream. In the field a professional familiar with fluvial geomorphology should document the top of the bank. When a professional is not employed, the top of the bank will be considered to be the top of the first significant slope landward of the water's edge when it is followed by at least 50 feet of relatively flat land.
"Variance" means a grant of relief by the City from the terms of a floodplain management regulation.
"Violation" means the failure of any structure or development to be fully compliant with all requirements of this article. A structure or other development without the elevation certificate, other certifications, or other evidence of compliance required by this article is presumed to be in violation until such time as the documentation is provided. No future improvements or developments can be made to structures found to be in violation unless the development is to bring the structure into compliance with City Code.
(Ord. 2261. Passed 8-16-18.)