AMEC engineering consultants provided the village with a brief inspection of its floodwall in Phase I of the project for $30,000. Phase II of the project will include a much more detailed study. To do this, AMEC has provided the village with a cost summary estimate of $214,698. The remaining money borrowed from U.S. Bank will help pay for additional repairs identified in the new study.
This money will be repaid to the bank over 120 equal monthly payments (10 years).
FEMA required both New Boston and Portsmouth bring their flood defense systems up to federal guidelines before April 15, 2011, or the walls would be decertified. If decertified, the municipalities would no longer be covered by FEMA flood insurance, and residents would be required to purchase their own private flood insurance policies at a much higher premium. Because the city and village floodwalls are connected, if either one fails to bring its flood defense system into federal compliance, both municipalities will be decertified.
Earlier this year, both New Boston and Portsmouth announced they would not meet the certification deadline. As a result, FEMA is expected to meet with Village Administrator Steve Hamilton at some time to decertify the village floodwall, but Hamilton said they could be re-certified again if they make the necessary repairs within the alloted 18-month grace period before FEMA issues new flood maps.
Phase II is estimated to last six to eight months; ending several months before the grace period expires.
Before agreeing to spend the money to begin Phase II work on its flood defense system, Village Council has asked Hamilton to check the status of Portsmouth’s certification process. In the meantime, council has also asked for an emergency ordinance to approve a contract agreement with AMEC. That ordinance will be brought-in for a vote at the next Village Council meeting on Sept. 20.
The New Boston Village Council meets regularly on the first and third Tuesday of each month, at 6:30 p.m., at the Vern Riffe Community Center on Rhodes Avenue. More information about village council is available on the New Boston website, www.newbostonvillage.com.
RYAN SCOTT OTTNEY can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 235, or firstname.lastname@example.org.