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August 2018 - Volume 28, Issue 3

FMA NEWS The Newsletter of the floodplain management association August 2018 - Volume 28, Issue 3

Mission: To promote the common interest in reducing flood losses and to encourage the protection and enhancement of natural floodplain values.

Brian Brown - Director MBK Engineers brown@mbkengineers.com 916-456-4400

George Booth- Chair Sacramento County Boothg@saccounty.net 916-874-6484

Darren Suen – Director California DWR Darren.Suen@water.ca.gov 916-574-0653

Alex Yescas – Vice Chair HDR Engineering, Inc alex.yescas@hdrinc.com 858-712-8283

John Powderly - Director

Maria Lorenzo-Lee – Secretary California DWR Maria.Lorenzo-Lee@water.ca.gov 916-574-0625 Mike Nowlan - Treasurer Wood Rodgers, Inc. MNowlan@woodrodgers.com 916-326-5277 Andrew Trelease - Director Clark County RFCD ATrelease@regionalflood.org 702-685-0000 Connie Perkins - Director City of Sacramento CPerkins@cityofsacramento.org 916-808-1914 Salomon Miranda – Director California DWR Salomon.Miranda@water.ca.gov 818-549-2347 Brent Siemer – Director City of Simi Valley, DPW BSiemer@simivalley.org 805-583-6805 John Moynier – Director Michael Baker International jmoynier@mbakerintl.com 949-855-5759


Mark Seits – Past Chair HDR Engineering, Inc. Mark.Seits@hdrinc.com 858-712-8312 David Pesavento - Advisor California DWR David.Pesavento@water.ca.gov 916-574-1205 Alan Haynes - Advisor NOAA Alan.haynes@noaa.gov 916-979-3056 Eric Simmons - Advisor FEMA Region IX Eric.Simmons@fema.dhs.gov 510-627-7029 Carol Tyau-Beam - Advisor Hawaii DLNR Carol.L.Tyau@hawaii.gov 808-587-0267 Bunny Bishop – Advisor Nevada DWR bbishop@water.nv.gov 775-684-2834 Dianna Woods - Advisor ASFPM Dianna.Woods@co.yakima.wa.us 509-574-2328 Mary Seits - Executive Director Floodplain Management Association mary.seits@floodplain.org (760) 936-3676



A Note From The Chair


Federal/ National News


State News


Call for Articles


Meet The Board


Levee Portfolio Report


Is Investment A Bad Word?


What is Big Data’s Impact On You


Hydrologic Conditions for California and Nevada


Conference Information


Emerging Professionals Committee


Mapping and Modeling Committee



A NOTE FROM THE CHAIR By George Booth Floodplain management is the operation of an overall program of corrective and preventative measures for reducing flood damage, including but not limited to, emergency preparedness plans, flood-control works and floodplain management regulations -FEMA definition. (FEMA.gov)

Imagine orchestrating an annual floodplain management conference seeking to pique the interest of such a broad association.

Hydrologists wonder how much it could rain, and how often. Planners seek to design sustainable communities. Floodplain managers endeavor to keep the finished floors of buildings dry. Engineers are compelled to control flooding. We know that floodplains have natural and beneficial function including environmental, habitat, nourishment of soils, and reduced erosion. Wide floodplains can take a bigger storm than floodplains that are narrowed by channelization. This is why we associate at FMA; so we can better understand each other’s perspectives, needs and interests.

We are also honored to host the Association of State Floodplain Managers Larry Larson Speaker Series topic: Big Data = Big Future + Big Challenges. This subject is new to many of us and should be fodder for continued discussion.

It seems as if the major reason we keep records of storm events is so we can say, ‘that was a record storm.’ I was in Kauai in the 1980s during what might have been a normal storm, but it was the most rain I had ever experienced. Our little discount rental car was almost swamped. The catch phrase ‘turn around don’t drown’ had not yet been coined, but I was smart enough to find an alternate route from the luau to our hotel. A few months ago, it rained 49.69 inches in one day in Kauai! (Weather.com) I cannot wrap my brain around that much rainfall. So, we will flock to Reno in September for our annual conference where we will associate with state and federal experts, hydrologists, climatologists, and local floodplain managers to learn from each other’s experiences. As an association of floodplain managers spanning the states of Nevada, Hawaii and California, we are as diverse as our geography. For example, I know one floodplain manager whose county reaches up to Lake Tahoe and down to an elevation of 30 feet. In light of our broad interests, the conference schedule is stuffed full of panels, plenaries and workshops. Droughts, floods, fires, mudslides, dam safety, risk communication, modeling, flood insurance, environmental mitigation, flood risk management... there will be dozens and dozens of topics! We are excited to have a guest speaker, from ASCE, to share with us the state of the nation’s infrastructure.


I doff my hat to our conference committee!

Floodplain management is the name and associating is the game, so this year at the Reno conference the emerging professionals committee is working on some ways we can have fun networking. Cheers! George Booth, Chair

SAVE THE DATE Floodplain Management Association Annual Conference September 4-7, 2018 Atlantis Resort Spa – Reno, Nevada 14th Annual Hawaii Floodplain Manager’s Conference Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources August 13-14, 2018 Pomaikai’i Ballrooms at Dole Cannery 735 Iwilei Road Honolulu, HI Southwest Extreme Precipitation Symposium March, 2019 Scripps MORE INFORMATION



FEMA Updates: April 2018 • With release of FEMA’s new Strategic Plan and the goal of building a culture of preparedness, two “moonshots” are proposed: doubling flood insurance coverage and quadrupling the nation’s investment into natural hazards risk reduction by 2022. A starter kit on the role insurance plays in advancing resilience is HERE. The role of the private market in flood insurance is a topic of many conversations. • The National Flood Insurance Program is currently authorized through July 31, 2018. Congress must reauthorize the program in order for FEMA to continue selling and renewing policies. An on-time, multi-year authorization is needed to promote stability in the real estate and mortgage markets For an update of the latest disaster declarations CLICK HERE

For information on Flood Insurance Reform – Rates and Refunds CLICK HERE

The Weather Research Act of 2017 required NOAA to submit a report to Congress on its abilities and needs to improve sub-seasonal to seasonal (S2S) forecasting; the report is due in October. S2S forecasts are defined in the act as forecasts from 2 weeks (beyond a weather model time horizon) to two years. NOAA has released a draft report outline for public comment, comments are due August 10th. The report outline and instructions for comment submission can be found HERE. Your input could help shape NOAA’s development of the S2S forecasting and its usefulness for lands in the western U.S. outside of hurricane affected areas.


STATE NEWS California 1.Lake Oroville Spillways Construction Update - June 27 Today the Department of Water Resources (DWR) provided an update on construction-related activities for the Lake Oroville Spillways Emergency Recovery Project. MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE HERE

2. Fremont Weir Groundbreaking Marks Milestone for Yolo Bypass Fish Passage

6. DWR Forms Partnership for Design and Construction of WaterFix DWR entered into a Joint Exercise of Powers Agreement with the Delta Conveyance Design and Construction Authority (DCA), forming a partnership for the design and construction of California WaterFix. MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE HERE

7. DWR and California State Parks Offer Free Day Use and Boat Launching at Oroville SRA on Select Days This Summer

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR), U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, and California Natural Resources Agency celebrated the groundbreaking of a critical habitat improvement project in the Yolo Bypass.

DWR and California State Parks announced free day use and boat launching at Lake Oroville State Recreation Area on select days each month this summer.


8. DWR Announces New Deputy Director

3. Lake Oroville State Recreation Area’s Thermalito Diversion Pool Open for Memorial Day California State Parks and the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) announced the Thermalito Diversion Pool and trails along its northern shore at Lake Oroville State Recreation Area will be open to the public for Memorial Day weekend, from Friday through Monday, 8 a.m. to sunset.


DWR announced the appointment of Kristopher A. Tjernell as Deputy Director of the Integrated Watershed Management Program on May 9, 2018. MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE HERE

9. Statement Regarding California Water Fix On May 8, 2018, the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors voted 4 to 3 to fully participate in California WaterFix.



4. Water Supply Allocation Increases Slightly for State Water Contractors

10. Repairs Underway on California Aqueduct

DWR today increased the State Water Project (SWP) allocation for 2018 to 35 percent – up slightly from the 30 percent allocation announced in April. MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE HERE

5. DWR Releases Draft Prioritization of Groundwater Basins Under SGMA: Comment Period Opens Today and Runs Through July 18 DWR released a draft prioritization of groundwater basins as required by the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) on May 18. MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE HERE


Repairs to the California State Water Project at Mile 62 near Gustine have been temporarily delayed due to a rupture in a water-filled cofferdam that was used to divert water for construction activities. As a result, water re-filled the aqueduct, located in Merced County, California. MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE HERE

11. Report of the Activities of DWR to the Central Valley Flood Protection Board: APRIL MAY JUNE


Hawaii Things continue to be very busy as the floodplain managers are serving their communities in the state of Hawaii and assisting in their recovery from floods and volcanic eruptions. Right now they are gearing up for their annual conference in Honolulu. There will be plenty to write about, after all the hard work is done. Stay tuned. If you know Carol Tyau or others working in the state, be sure to offer her (them) some words of encouragement. WAI HALANA NEWSLETTER

Nevada Outreach: Nevada’s fifth Flood Awareness Week (FAW) is November 4 – 10, 2018. The goal of FAW is to create flood resilient communities in Nevada and increase flood awareness throughout the state. Flood awareness and preparedness is raised through the coordination of local outreach events, a media campaign, and the NEVADA FLOODS WEBSITE.

Training: The Nevada Division of Water Resources Floodplain Management Program will be providing training on the Community Rating System in northern Nevada in October 2018. Once the dates have been confirmed, flyers will be sent out announcing the details for these exciting training opportunities.




CALL FOR ARTICLES! The FMA Newsletter welcomes the input of its members and now our extended family of readership to contribute to the conversation! 2018 is well underway so keep the great articles coming! We need to hear from all of you. There’s always room for more to join the ranks of published authors. Showcase your programs, projects, tools, policies, regulations or ideas to hundreds of floodplain management professionals throughout the U.S.! Articles must be submitted in Word format to MARYSEITS@FLOODPLAIN.ORG and may contain 2-3 small pictures. Preferred length is less than 850 words. For more details call (760) 936-3676. YOU CAN CONTACT DGARRISON@SMITHMOOREASSOC.COM WITH ANY QUESTIONS.

in design, nature is our best teacher.


Tory r. Walker engineering

r e l i a b l e s o l u T i o n s i n WaT e r r e s o u r c e s


760-414-9212 FMA NEWS

MEET THE BOARD John Powderly John Powderly has over 20 years of planning and project management experience, including 10 years of water resources experience. John began his career in the US Air Force Civil Engineers, serving in Texas, California, and Honduras. He transitioned to local government with the City of West Sacramento, where he worked as a land use and environmental planner. In 2008, John transferred from West Sacramento’s Planning Division to their Flood Protection Division, working as an environmental project manager and administering the City’s Floodplain Management and Community Rating System program. Since 2015, he has been a Civil Works Project Manager at the Sacramento District of the US Army Corps of Engineers. John participates in FMA on his own time, and does not represent the US Army Corps of Engineers or the US Government while participating in FMA activities. John is both a Certified Planner and a Certified Floodplain Manager. He has been on the Board of Directors of the Floodplain Management Association since 2013 and has also worked with the Association of Environmental Professionals (Superior California Chapter) and the American Planning Association (Sacramento Valley Section). John has some trouble leaving work at work - in his free time, he enjoys reading about community & urban planning, disaster response, and almost anything about water.





The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Levee Portfolio Report By Brad Arcement, P.E. & Noah D. Vroman, P.E.

The Levee Safety Program has recently completed the first summary report of the flood risks and benefits associated with levee systems included within USACE portfolio of levees. Utilizing the best available information gathered from risk assessments, this report provides valuable information that allows for improved management and investments at a portfolio level, including policy and technical guidance, training, and research and methods development. In addition, this report establishes a baseline that allows for future analysis of portfolio trends in inventory and risks.

Breakdown of USACE portfolio levees by entity responsible for operations and maintenance and the percentage of miles of the total portfolio.

Much of What We Value is Behind USACE Levees • 4,500 schools • 300 Colleges and Universities • 34 Major Sport Venues • 25% of the National Daily Refining Capacity • National Historic Sites (e.g., National Mall)

USACE portfolio levees represent an unknown portion of the total levees in the United States. There are roughly an equal number of miles of levees in the National Levee Database that are within the USACE Levee Portfolio as outside.

Overview of the USACE Portfolio. The USACE levee portfolio includes about 2,220 levee systems totaling approximately 14,150 miles in length. Over 1,200 levee sponsors operate and maintain 2,000 of these levee systems, spanning roughly 70% of the length of the entire portfolio, pointing out that effective risk management is unlikely without comprehensive approaches of sponsors, communities and USACE. To complicate matters further, fifteen percent of levees include multiple segments, which usually means multiple operations and maintenance authorities. Since performance of the levee is only as good as its “weakest link,” understanding and engagement of all parties within a single system is critical. FMA NEWS

Overview of Risk. Thirteen percent of the levees in the portfolio are considered moderate, high, or very high risk – levees that require interim risk reduction measures to reduce risk while longer term and more comprehensive solutions are being pursued. Although this is a relatively small number compared to the overall portfolio, people and property are concentrated behind these higher risk levees. Of the 11 million people that are behind USACE portfolio levees, 86 percent of them live behind moderate, high or very high-risk levees. Most of these levees have multiple risk drivers. Please note: this information is based on completion of risk assessments for 73 percent of the portfolio.


Risk assessment results to date. LSAC is an acronym that stands for Levee Safety Action Classification. These classifications have five categories (very low risk to very high risk).

Percentage of levee systems with each levee performance risk driver. One system may have multiple drivers.

Some Key Risk Drivers. The graphic below shows the top levee performance drivers. • As you can see, overtopping followed by breach is the top risk driver for levees within the USACE portfolio. The likelihood of overtopping varies considerably across the portfolio -- from a 1-in-2 chance to a 1-in-5,000 chance of overtopping any given year, with a majority around a 1-200 annual chance. USACE continues to work to update data and refine H&H models to refine these estimates, some of which have high uncertainty. • Seepage through or beneath the levee is the second most common performance risk driver impacting 17 percent of the portfolio. This risk driver is impacted by the presence of an estimated 16,000 degrading, undersized or unreliable pipes and conduits. • In addition to risks associated with the levee itself, risk assessments take into consideration how vulnerable a population behind a levee is by assessing preparedness of the community to evacuate those behind a levee if needed. For example, 63 percent of communities have either incomplete or non-existent evacuation plans.

Communities behind nearly on quarter of the levees have no evacuation plan.

Cost Estimates to Reduce Risk. Initial cost estimates, which are agnostic as to who pays, range from $6.5 billion to $38 billion, with an expected cost of $21 billion. One observation from this data is that relatively modest costs ($300 million) of improving evacuation effectiveness across all levees is a smart investment. Costs are significantly lower than infrastructure improvements and directly reduces risk to loss of life by getting people out of harm’s way. USACE Levees -- Only Part of the Picture. As a Nation, we know little about the condition or risks associated with levees outside the USACE portfolio. As such we do not have a true national look at the risks and benefits levees provide to the nation. The Levee Safety Program is working with Silver Jackets to coordinate with states, tribes, local communities and private levee owner-operators to conduct a one-time voluntary inspection and risk assessment for all levees in the Nation. The full report is available on the USACE Levee Safety Program website HERE FMA NEWS

WHEN DID PROTECTING LIVES BECOME OPTIONAL? Is “investment” the right word for protecting lives? By Dave Peterson

We in the flood protection business have adopted an odd practice; referring to expenditures that repair deficient life-protecting structures as investments. The term “investment” denotes exercising a choice. In our personal lives, we make choices about whether to invest in stocks, bonds, real estate, etc. But is this an appropriate way to think when we’re talking about public infrastructure that protects human lives? Other civil engineering infrastructure is not saddled with such confusion. Caltrans responded to the 1971 Sylmar earthquake with the Bridge Seismic Safety Program, which was revised and redoubled after the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, and again after the 1994 Northridge earthquake. In all, over 2,200 bridges were retrofitted to withstand new seismic standards. The state structured the program in 3 phases, and eventually worked through all the bridges. At no time was a bridge retrofit subjected to “investment decision” questions about benefit-cost ratio, net benefits, growth inducement, or multi-benefit features. These improvements were critical to prevent fatalities and the public infrastructure was brought up to code ASAP. The retrofits were prioritized for spending priority, but eventually Caltrans worked through the entire list. Similarly, other civil engineering disciplines address revealed risks and standards changes, with urgency given to issues involving life safety. For instance, when the Oroville Dam spillway failed, there was no talk of conditioning the fix based on a benefit cost ratio (BCR) threshold, adequate multi-benefit features, or whether fixing it would induce growth somewhere. It was critical and DWR just fixed it, ASAP. Why then, do we apply those “investment decision” screens before fixing levees? Levees are public facilities that kill people when they fail. Now we have detailed information and analyses in California pinpointing and quantifying the problems and risks. However, both the State of California and USACE have policies which rationalize not fixing these levee deficiencies based upon “investment criteria” such as insufficient incremental economic justification, growth inducement, or insufficient ecosystem enhancement features.


Can we really rationalize massive loss of life so cavalierly? On an individual basis, if a person on Medicare is diagnosed with cancer, does anyone do a BCR calculation before making the “investment decision” to treat it? And the consequences of that decision concerns one life, not dozens, or hundreds, or thousands. And yet we can let BCR stand in the way of a decision to fix critical deficiencies in public infrastructure that will save thousands of lives in a single flood event? No, I submit that we need to turn this overthought Etch a Sketch upside down and shake it vigorously. We need to get back to basics in the flood protection business. Hundreds of miles of publicly-owned levees are simply unsafe and this is very well documented. We taxpayers just spent a ton of money figuring this out. Now we have to bring them up TO CODE without delay. It is fair game to prioritize spending from high to low. But we must work all the way through the inventory ASAP. Going forward, I propose that we no longer use the word “investment”; these life-threatening levee deficiencies should be cured as part of a LEVEE SAFETY PROGRAM, analogous to the Bridge Seismic Safety Program and Dam Safety Program. Our only spending precondition should be availability of funds and order of priority, just like we do for bridges and dams.



FMA Newsletter Article on 4th Annual Larry Larson Speaker Series event. What is Big Data’s Impact on You? Learn More at the 4th Annual Larry Larson Speaker Series Even in Reno!


Learn More at the 4th Annual Larry Larson Speaker Series Even in Reno!

We’ve all been hearing more and more about Big Data everywhere we turn. So why should we care? By George Riedel How will it impact us? These are questions that will be answered at this year’s ASFPM (Association of State Floodplain Managers) Foundation Larry Larson Speaker Series presentation and panel discussion that is being held in collaboration with the FMA (Floodplain Management Association) Conference on We’ve all been hearing more about Big Data Recently, big data solutions Wednesday, September 5th at 10:15and a.m.more in Reno, Nevada.

have been applied to everywhere we turn. So why should we care? How will flood risk identification, providing data analytics and topic is “Big Data = Big Future + Big Challenges.” The keynote speaker for the event is Daniel Cotter, itThe impact us? These are questions that will be answered results in new ways, and with notable consequences. from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Mr. Cotter is the Director of the First Responders atGroup this (FRG) year’sin ASFPM (Association of State Floodplain Potential applications include determination of flood the Science and Technology Directorate, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Managers) Foundation Larson risk, informing He has extensive experienceLarry in flood hazard Speaker mapping asSeries well flood disaster mitigation, response, of andinsurance ratings, flood forecasting, presentation and discussion that Among is being in duties, Dan oversees investment modeling, recovery in both the panel public and private sector. hisheld current the Flood Apex post-event damage assessments, collaboration with the Science FMA (Floodplain Management post-event Research Program of DHS and Technology Directorate. Mr. Cotter will also be joined planning by a panel analytics, and other uses. Each of of experts including Edward Clark, from the NOAA September National Water5th Center (NWC); Samantha Medlock, can have profound consequences Association) Conference on Wednesday, these applications from Willis Towers Watson; and at 10:15 a.m. in Reno, Nevada. for the end users and David Ford, from David Ford the public. Challenges Consulting to discuss this topic. include assumptions made The topic is “Big Data = Big Future Big data methodologies are being with incomplete data, + Big Challenges.” The keynote used increasingly to provide flood appropriate reporting of speaker for the event is Daniel risk information scales ranging results, sensationalizing of Cotter, from theatDepartment from the community level to the headlines, understanding of Homeland Security (DHS). entire nation. It represents the use of of the limitations of specific Mr. is the Director and of the largeCotter volumes of structured results, the proper role of First Responders unstructured data,Group analyzed(FRG) and professional engineers in inmanipulated the Science and Technology to capture trends or risk data that impact public observations U.S. that might be considered Directorate, Department of meaningful. At its simplest form, it can range from leveraging massive geospatially referenced data sets into physical models, to using data analytic tools searching for safety, and what investments must be made to improve Homeland Security (DHS). He has extensive experience trends in equally massive data sets. big data usage in the future. A recent application of in flood hazard mapping as well flood disaster mitigation, big data for flood response, and recovery both theapplied publictoand Recently, big data solutionsin have been floodprivate risk identification, providing data analytics andrisk uses has signaled potential downgrade of future municipal bonds for high risk areas, sector. Among his current oversees Potential the Flood results in new ways, and withduties, notableDan consequences. applications include determination of flood risk, informing of insurance ratings, flood forecasting, investment modeling, post-event damage while in another recent instance, there were serious Apex Research Program of DHS Science and Technology assessments, post-event planning analytics, and other uses. Each of these applications can have concerns about the results and what they suggested. Directorate. Mr. Cotter will also be joined by a panel for the end users and the public. Challenges include assumptions madewhen with entities developing these datasets Furthermore, ofprofound expertsconsequences including Edward Clark, from the NOAA incomplete data, appropriate reporting of results, sensationalizing of headlines, understanding of the are asked to explain assumptions, quite often there is National Water Center (NWC); Samantha Medlock, from limitations of specific results, the proper role of professional engineers in risk data that impact public little to no response or proprietary analyses are claimed, Willis Watson; andmust David Ford, to from David safety,Towers and what investments be made improve bigFord data usage in the future. A recent preventing fullbonds transparency into the development and Consulting tobig discuss thisflood topic. application of data for risk uses has signaled potential downgrade of future municipal reporting results. for high risk areas, while in another recent instance, there were serious concerns about theof results and whatdata they methodologies suggested. Furthermore, when used entitiesincreasingly developing these Big are being to datasets are asked to explain assumptions, quite there is little no response or proprietary analyses are claimed, preventing Please come join us for this plenary session to discuss provide flood riskoften information at toscales ranging from full transparency into the development and reporting of results. the benefits, risks, and challenges associated with the the community level to the entire nation. It represents use of big data with in flood risk identification and flood the usecome of large of structured unstructured Please join usvolumes for this plenary session toand discuss the benefits, risks, and challenges associated the useanalyzed of big dataand in flood risk identification and floodtrends risk management. risk management. data, manipulated to capture or observations that might be considered meaningful. At its simplest form, it can range from leveraging massive geospatially referenced data sets into physical models, to using data analytic tools searching for trends in equally massive data sets.




By Alan Haynes

This was a relatively quiet year overall with moderate carryover reservoir storage from the anomalously wet year of 2016-2017. December was abnormally dry with the NORTHERN SIERRA 8-STATION INDEX recording 7% of average while the SAN JOAQUIN 5-STATION INDEX received only 4% of average. February was also abnormally dry with the 8-Station index at 20% and the 5-Station index at 16%. A couple of intense late season atmospheric river systems boosted the water supply with the 8-Station index at 165% for March and 126% for April, while the 5-station index was a whopping 250% of average for March. Due to extended dry periods in December and February, flooding was not much of an issue, although a rain/snowmelt combination in early April prompted the closure of roads and campgrounds in Yosemite National Park one weekend due to flooding on the Merced River through the Yosemite Valley. The intensity of the atmospheric river systems in late March and early April did bring fast rises to many small streams, especially coming out of the Sierra Nevada, with minor flooding on the east side of the Sierra Nevada near Reno and Carson City in early April.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recently completed phase three of a multiyear effort to increase its supercomputing capability. The NOAA supercomputing capability is now among the 30 fastest in the world. This will allow the NWS next year to increase the atmospheric model resolution of its Global Forecast System (GFS) model from 13 km to 9 km and from 64 levels to 128 levels. It will also extend these resolutions from 10 days out to 16 days. The revamped GFS will run in research mode during this year’s hurricane season.

Runoff for the 2018 Water Year ending September 30th is projected to be 78% of median for the Sacramento Valley and 95% of median for the San Joaquin Valley. Reservoir storage around California is generally running near average to well above average for this time of year. Even Oroville, which was kept low to avoid using the spillway still under construction, is currently at 77% of capacity.

National Weather Service/National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration The National Weather Service (NWS) is working on its strategic plan which will lay out the direction for the agency over the next seven years. A draft version was presented to the field in May and an open comments period for field staff was extended into June. The plan should be publicly available by the fall of 2018.


JOIN US FOR THE 2018 FLOODPLAIN MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION ANNUAL CONFERENCE IN RENO, NEVADA!!! Highlights include: • Plenary speaker Kristina Swallow, ASCE President • Awards Luncheon and speaker, Chris Smallcomb, NWS Reno, NV • Over 50 panels, technical sessions and workshops • Friday field trip of projects along the Truckee River, hosted by The Nature Conservancy and Truckee River Flood Management Authority • Larry Larson Speaker series, Big Data, hosted by the ASFPM Foundation Date: September 4-7, 2018 Location: The Atlantis Resort, 3800 South Virginia Street, Reno, Nevada, 89502 Theme: Sustainability in the Face of Change In our efforts to move forward with technology and sustainability, the Floodplain Management Association will be providing a digital program this year. If you would like a hard copy version, please print a copy from our website link prior to attending. The printable version of the program will be available for download the week prior to the conference. We will have a print copy of the Program-at-a-Glance onsite to aid you through the event.

Join us for the 2018 Floodplain Management Associat

Highlights include: • • • • • FMA NEWS


Plenary speaker Kristina Swallow, ASCE Presid Awards Luncheon and speaker, Chris Smallco Over 100 panels, technical sessions and work Friday field trip of projects along the Truckee Truckee River Flood Management Authority Larry Larson Speaker series, Big Data, hosted

September 4-7, 2018



By Megan Leroy

I am a civil engineer in hydrology and hydraulics at Mead & Hunt. The Floodplain Management Association (FMA) annual conference in 2017 was the first conference I attended with FMA. During the conference, I meet with George Booth, chairman of the FMA Board and we discussed starting the Emerging Professionals Committee. This committee was started to provide mentorship opportunities and to engage emerging professionals in floodplain management. The FMA conference provides emerging professionals a chance to engage with other floodplain managers and experienced floodplain managers an opportunity to mentor emerging professionals. I had previously attended conferences with Engineers without Borders, typically with a group of college students. Attending the FMA conference was both exciting and scary. As a young professional, I was excited to dip my feet into attending conferences as a professional looking to gain technical skills and expand my network of those in floodplain management. Before the conference, I was feeling a little overwhelmed at the sheer number of people I would be mingling with. Fortunately, I was able to attend the conference with my supervisor who took me under her wing and introduced me to her connections at the conference. This is my story, but it could easily describe the experience of any new attendee to the FMA conference.

tion Annual Conference in Reno, Nevada!!!

dent omb, NWS Reno, NV kshops River, hosted by The Nature Conservancy and by the ASFPM Foundation

I would encourage those seasoned attendees to take advantage of the opportunities to introduce yourself to new floodplain managers that you are not associated with. Here are some tips to help expand your circle and invite others to join your group: • Go and talk to those who are eating or standing alone, introduce yourself; • Bring a friend with you to introduce you to those you do not know; • If someone comes up to you, invite them to join your conversation; and • Support emerging professionals and those who are new to FMA – help them have a positive experience to keep them coming back for years to come.

Just remember, you could be the one smiling face to light up a new attendee’s day! Most people bite food not people – I believe only the Donner Party and vampires bite people – so take a chance and introduce yourself to someone new.

Ideas transform communities At HDR, we’re helping our clients push open the doors to what’s possible, every day.




By Cameron Jenkins

Hello FMA, Are you sick and tired of the current mapping and modeling standards? Do you think you could make or improve upon the current standards? Are you a “Modeling Wizard”? If you said yes to any of these, then you should come join the Modeling and Mapping Committee. Please contact me, Cameron Jenkins (Cameron.Jenkins@AtkinsGlobal.com) if you would like to share any thoughts, learn more, or become a member of the committee. The objective of the committee is to help tackle modeling and mapping challenges through developing best management practices, providing feedback to State, Federal, and other agencies on current guidelines, and working with software developers to identify software needs. Over the last year we have been preparing for the upcoming FMA conference by preparing a panel on the future of 2D modeling and mapping, presenting on “How to Review 2D Models” at the ASFPM conference in Phoenix based on our workshop last year, and discussing 2D guidelines with different agencies. For those who missed the workshop on “How to Review 2D Models” last year and the five step process, the presentations, handouts, QA/QC documents, and a guidance document can be downloaded HERE For those who are planning to attend the FMA Conference in September 2018, the next committee meeting will be held on the last day of the conference. We will be discussing the findings from the conference panels on 2D model from this year and last year and setting dates for upcoming meetings. We will also be discussing challenges and opportunities that we would like to tackle during the upcoming year.






Profile for Floodplain Management Association

FMA NEWS August 2018 - Volume 28, Issue 3  

The Association newsletter, published online quarterly, includes the latest information on floodplain management policy, tools and practices...

FMA NEWS August 2018 - Volume 28, Issue 3  

The Association newsletter, published online quarterly, includes the latest information on floodplain management policy, tools and practices...

Profile for fmanews