*JOINT HEARING with the Subcommittee on Disaster Recovery* "Flood Preparedness a The purpose of this hearing was to evaluate preparedness and mitigation efforts among flood-prone communities and responsible federal… read more

*JOINT HEARING with the Subcommittee on Disaster Recovery* "Flood Preparedness a The purpose of this hearing was to evaluate preparedness and mitigation efforts among flood-prone communities and responsible federal agencies, by evaluating the accuracy of the FEMA flood map modernization process, its impact on states and localities, mechanisms for dispute resolution, and the impact of levee inspections and certifications on determinations of flood risk. 

Since the epic failure of the federal levees in New Orleans in August 2005, additional levee failures occurred during the Midwest floods in 2008 and the historic spring floods earlier this year in Rhode Island and Tennessee. 

On March 18, 2010, 16 Senators signed a letter to FEMA and the Corps of Engineers citing challenges in the ongoing flood map modernization process. Among the areas listed were: a lack of communication and outreach with local stakeholders; a lack of coordination between FEMA and USACE in answering questions about both flood mapping, flood insurance and flood control infrastructure repairs; a lack of recognition of locally funded flood control projects when determining flood zones; the affordability of flood insurance; inadequate time and resources to complete repairs to flood control structures before flood maps are finalized; and potential impacts new flood maps might have on economic development. 

This hearing provided an opportunity for the subcommittee to evaluate mapping methodologies and map dispute resolution mechanisms, hear suggestions for improved outreach to local residents and stakeholders, and determine options for local governments to finance levee inspections and repairs. 

link to photo gallery --

Member Statements

Senator Mark L. Pryor index.cfm?FuseAction=Files.View&&FileStore_id=650950be-bfbe-48d4-97d2-c711b6416e87" target="_blankview statement

Senator Mary L. Landrieu index.cfm?FuseAction=Files.View&&FileStore_id=2de5b4f6-6d35-411d-b834-8d0e19a6a52e" target="_blankview statement


Panel 1

The Honorable Jo-Ellen Darcy


view testimony

Assistant Secretary of the Army, Civil Works

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Sandra Knight


view testimony

Deputy Assistant Administrator, Federal Insurance & Mitigation Administration

Federal Emergency Management Agency, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Panel 2

The Honorable Bob Mehlhoff


view testimony

District 26

Montana House of Representatives

Dr. David Maidment


view testimony

Director of the Center for Research in Water Resources & the Hussein M. Alharthy Centennial Chair in Civil Engineering

The University of Texas at Austin

Sam Riley Medlock, JD, CFM


view testimony

Policy Counsel, Association of State Floodplain Managers

Member, National Committee on Levee Safety

Robert Rash, P.E., P.L.S.


view testimony

Chief Executive Officer & Chief Engineer

St. Francis Levee District of Arkansas

Dr. Joseph Suhayda


view testimony

Interim Director, Louisiana State University Hurricane Center

Chairman, Independent Technical Review Committee, FEMA/USACE Louisiana Storm Surge Study close

Video Obtained From the Committee Website
This video was obtained from the Congress and may be encoded at a different quality than C-SPAN uses for hearings covered with its own cameras. Also, the video might not start at the beginning of the hearing and much of the data normally added to the C‑SPAN.org for committee hearings may not be available.

This program has not yet aired

Alert me when this program is:
More information about

*JOINT HEARING with the Subcommittee on Disaster Recovery* "Flood Preparedness a

Program ID:
Senate Committee
Senate Committee
342, Dirksen Senate Office Building, Washington, District of Columbia, United States