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Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) for the City of Bozeman are being updated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). FEMA released a preliminary version of new FIRMs in 2016. A comment and appeal period for the preliminary FIRMs was held in late 2018. New FIRMs are expected to be finalized in late 2020. 

Refinement to FEMA's Preliminary FIRMs

The City of Bozeman has completed a mapping refinement to the preliminary FIRMs for a limited portion of Bozeman Creek (from Bogert Park to the East Gallatin River) and Mill Ditch (from L Street/I-90 overpass to the East Gallatin River). FEMA has released this mapping refinement for a 90 day comment and appeal period. The proposed refinement is being issued by FEMA as a Letter of Map Revision (LOMR). Designated floodplain areas in this Mapping Refinement LOMR will supersede designated floodplain areas shown on FEMA's preliminary FIRMs.

Submit a comment or appeal for the Mapping Refinement LOMR during the official 90-Day Appeal and Comment Period February 21 - May 22, 2020

FEMA's 90-day Appeal and Comment period for the Mapping Refinement LOMR runs February 21 - May 22, 2020. During that time you may submit an official Appeal or Comment concerning the Mapping Refinement LOMR.

Appeals are technical in nature and must contain data and documentation that clearly shows an inaccuracy or error was committed by FEMA. Technical data including HEC-RAS modeling files for the Mapping Refinement LOMR may be obtained from the City Floodplain Administrator upon request. 

Comments are generally non-technical in nature and related to issues with mapping annotations such as road names, or pointing out errors with political boundaries, etc.

Official FEMA criteria for appeals is provided in the link below.

Floodplain Map Viewer

Use the Floodplain Map Viewer and toggle on the 'Refinement to Preliminary Floodplain Designations' layer to view the Mapping Refinement LOMR floodplain areas and determine if your property is located in a floodplain.

floodplain map screenshot

You can view the Mapping Refinement LOMR documents at the link below. You can also view the Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Maps and the Preliminary Flood Insurance Study documents at the links below.

Understand the effects of owning property in a Floodplain

Local development regulations and federal flood insurance requirements apply to properties in mapped floodplain areas on a FIRM. More information on floodplain areas designated on a FIRM is provided below:

Public Meetings Held

The City of Bozeman, Gallatin County, Montana DNRC, and FEMA hosted several Public Open Houses in January 2016 and in January 2017 to review the draft maps and Preliminary FIRMs and talk with property owners one-on-one about the proposed map changes.  

Currently Effective Flood Insurance Rate Maps (dated 9/2/2011)

Currently effective FIRMs for the City of Bozeman have an effective date of September 2, 2011. These Flood Insurance Rate Maps replaced the 1988 version of the maps and substantially revised the Special Flood Hazard Areas mapped for the East Gallatin River and portions of Bridger Creek.  No change in the mapped SFHA was made for Bozeman Creek and its tributaries with the 2011 FIRM's.

Members of the public are encouraged to view the official maps to determine if their property is affected. Hard copies are available for viewing at the City of Bozeman Engineering Department, located in the Stiff Professional Building at 20 E. Olive Street.  The 2011 FIRM's can be viewed and downloaded at the links below. The FIRMs are also officially maintained in an online web map format by FEMA.

The City of Bozeman does not maintain official floodplain maps for Gallatin County.  For information concerning official FEMA flood maps for properties outside of City of Bozeman limits, please contact the Gallatin County Floodplain Administrator with the Gallatin County Planning Department by calling 406-582-3130.

Flood Insurance

All structures with federally secured mortgages located in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) are required by federal law to carry a flood insurance policy.  Flood insurance is underwritten by the federal government and is made available through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).  A typical homeowner or business owner insurance policy does not cover flood damages.  Flood policies may be purchased from qualified local insurance agents.  To learn more about the NFIP or to locate a local NFIP insurance agent visit floodsmart.gov.

 Structures that will be newly mapped into a Special Flood Hazard Area are eligible for Cost Saving Insurance Options. 

Emergency Management

Portions within the city limits of Bozeman are subject to flood hazards from waterways within the City.  These flood hazards are generally characterized on the Flood Insurance Rate Maps issued by FEMA, however the FIRMs do not map floodplains for every waterway within the City.  Flood hazards exist for any property located adjacent to waterways whether FEMA has officially mapped the floodplain or not.  Gallatin County Emergency Management is responsible for coordination of public safety agencies during a flooding emergency.  To learn what you can do to prepare for a flooding event visit readygallatin.com/flooding.

Real-Time Stream Gauge Data

The United States Geologic Survey (USGS) maintains an active stream gauge on the East Gallatin River near the Bozeman Water Reclamation Facility.  See a complete listing of all USGS stream gauges in Montana.  Those interested may sign up for the USGS Water Alert service for the East Gallatin stream gauge and receive email or text alerts when user-defined gauge data thresholds are exceeded.

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