President's FY19 Budget Would Cut Vital Flood Mapping Activities

President Donald Trump’s proposed FY19 budget released on February 12 requested only $100 million for FEMA’s flood hazard mapping program – a decrease of $78 million from FY17 (FY18 levels have yet to be enacted). This program helps the National Flood Insurance Program determine who is required to purchase flood insurance, and its data can influence the development of floodplain and building regulations. Funding for flood mapping comes from appropriated funds and fees from flood insurance policyholders, and severe cuts to appropriated funds would put an undue fiscal burden on state and local governments. This president’s proposal comes after a report from the Inspector General’s Office found that nearly 60% of FEMA’s flood maps are out-of-date. Congress will likely push back on these proposed cuts, and several members on both sides of the aisle have supported increased funding for flood mapping activities.