FEMA plans to issue a 2021 addendum to the 2017 CRS Coordinator’s Manual. The changes will go into effect January 2021. The June/July issue of the NFIP/CRS Update newsletter says the addendum will be used by communities in conjunction with the current Coordinator’s Manual, and will serve as a bridge between the existing guidance materials and the more comprehensive update that is anticipated in the future as FEMA continues to implement the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) transformation.
The 2021 addendum will include several new credit opportunities and some updates and modifications aimed at simplifying credit and reporting requirements. The addendum also will feature two new prerequisite requirements:
- A new Class 8 prerequisite will require communities to adopt and enforce at least a 1-foot freeboard requirement (including equipment or mechanical items) for all residential buildings constructed, substantially improved, and/or reconstructed due to substantial damage, throughout its Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) where base flood elevations have been determined. Communities will need to be enforcing the freeboard prerequisite by the first CRS verification cycle visit after January 1, 2021. See Frequently Asked Questions on the Class 8 Freeboard Prerequisite.
- The CRS is changing the Class 9 prerequisite for FEMA Elevation Certificates and changing credit in Activity 310 (Elevation Certificates). These changes are to clarify and simplify the CRS requirements related to Elevation Certificates. The CRS has always required communities to collect and maintain Elevation Certificates as a Class 9 prerequisite with the requirement of 90% accuracy for all Elevation Certificates collected by the community since its last verification cycle visit as established with the 2013 CRS Coordinator’s Manual and explained in Activity 310. With the 2021 addendum, the Class 9 prerequisites will explicitly include the 90% accuracy threshold to assist new and participating CRS communities understand the program requirements. You can find more details starting in page 2 of the NFIP/CRS newsletter, June-July 2020.
CRS will provide more information and guidance in coming months. Beginning in September, the CRS Webinar Series will focus on the 2021 addendum and new credit opportunities. View the webinar schedule and register.