Parsons, West Virginia – The City of Parsons and its residents are no strangers to the effects
of flooding: the dollar losses, the inconveniences, the damaged homes, the closed businesses.
It’s for that reason that the City takes floodplain management seriously.
The City is one of just 13 communities in West Virginia to participate in the Federal Emergency
Management Agency’s (FEMA) Community Rating System (CRS).
As a participant in the CRS, city residents receive discounts on their flood insurance. As those
premiums rise, that discount becomes more and more important.
One element of the CRS program is making sure that residents are aware of floodplain
management regulations and what those mean for them. The foundation of the City’s floodplain
management program is the City of Parsons Floodplain Regulations.
Designed to promote the general health, welfare, and safety of the community, the regulations
require the use of construction practices that can prevent or minimize flood damage. Most
recognizably, the regulations require a permit for any development, new construction, substantial
improvement, repair of substantial damage, other repairs, or the placement or relocation of any
structure (including manufactured homes) within the City. Where the land proposed for these
upgrades is partially or fully in a special flood hazard area (or floodplain), a site plan with
elevation data must be submitted to and approved by the City’s floodplain administrator.
Generally, development activities in floodplains must ensure structures are not in floodways, and
that the lowest floors of structures, to include basements, ductwork, and utilities, are elevated to
two feet above the base flood elevation for the site.
Residents can view the floodplain ordinance either at City Hall or on the internet at
The City also encourages residents to visit the West Virginia Flood Tool at www.mapwv.gov. The
flood tool shows the special flood hazards in the Parsons corporate limits, and it serves as a first
step to understanding one’s risks with respect to flooding.
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