Draft Tar-Pamlico River Basin Plan Presented at Final Scoping Meeting

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View the draft Tar-Pamlico Basin Plan - 1.77MBMore information on PDF.

View the Tar-Pamilco Basin Plan presentation in Power Point format ( PPT - 1.40MB ).

The Final Scoping Meetings to present the Draft Tar-Pamlico River Basin Plan were held on January 30, 2001, in Greenville, NC, and on January 31, 2001, in Tarboro, NC. All impacted counties and communities were invited and were provided a final opportunity for input. The Draft Tar-Pamlico River Basin Plan summarizes the scoping phase, outlines how the base maps and topography will be acquired, proposes engineering methods by which each flooding source reach will be studied, and describes the process and schedule for completing the map production.

During the scoping phase, the North Carolina Division of Emergency Management (NCDEM) worked closely with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and FEMA's Mapping Coordination Contractor, Dewberry & Davis LLC (FEMA-MCC/D&D). Stated simply, "scoping" is determining what areas are floodprone and need to have flood hazard data developed, what methods will be used to generate that hazard data, and how the data will be presented on the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs). For the Tar-Pamlico River Basin, the comprehensive scoping phase entailed:


  • Researching and inventorying available elevation, flood hazard, and digital base map data that may be useful for preparing updated digital FIRMs;
  • Assessing existing flood hazard data (for example, flood elevation profiles, floodplain boundaries, floodways, coastal hazard zones) on effective FIRMs for adequacy;
  • Outreach to, and input from, counties and communities regarding their needs for updated FIRMs;
  • Identifying data that need to be developed or acquired, such as digital base maps, Digital Elevation Models, or field surveys of stream channels, hydraulic structures, and coastal transects;
  • Determining the proposed scales and paneling scheme for countywide digital FIRM production; and
  • Developing a schedule for completion of updated flood hazard data and digital FIRM production.

For flooding sources within the basin, the flood hazard data from effective FIRMs were assessed for adequacy in consultation with the impacted counties and communities. For areas where the existing flood hazard data were deemed to be inadequate or outdated, a priority level was established and the most appropriate method of developing updated data was selected based on the:


  • Type and extent of manmade and natural changes within the floodplain and/or watershed;
  • Quality of data available; and
  • Existing and/or proposed levels of development affected by the flooding source.

To begin the scoping process, the State held a central "kickoff" meeting with county and local floodplain administrators on August 31, 2000, in Raleigh. The objective of this meeting was to overview the State's CTS Agreement with FEMA and the new Statewide Flood Mapping Program, inform the floodplain administrators of the process that would be followed to develop updated mapping, and encourage them to be active participants in the process. A questionnaire regarding the communities' mapping needs was distributed at the meeting to those community representatives in attendance.

The results of the responses to the community questionnaires and the State's initial research were entered into a GIS-enabled scoping database. This database was used to generate "Initial Scoping Packages" for each community. These packages were used to conduct the Initial Scoping Meetings, which the State held in each county in the Tar-Pamlico River Basin. At the Initial Scoping Meetings, NCDEM, FEMA, and the FEMA-MCC/D&D met individually, or in groups, with the county and its incorporated communities' representatives to:


  • Provide a brief overview of the State's Flood Mapping Program;
  • Review the research results for their community using the Initial Scoping Package;
  • Discuss the community's mapping needs and response to the questionnaire; and
  • Identify available local data such as base maps, topographic data, ongoing studies, etc.

In assessing the communities' flood mapping needs, emphasis was placed on:


  • Areas of future development;
  • New or proposed crossings, encroachments, and flood control structures;
  • Historically flooded areas;
  • Out-of-date or inadequate data on current FIRMs;
  • Existing data mismatches with contiguous communities; and
  • Out-of-date FEMA analyses (detailed or approximate).

For flooding sources identified in the meeting as having a flood mapping need, the community was asked to provide input on proposed study priorities and analysis methods.

The State synthesized its research and the county and community input. The results were used to develop the Draft Basin Plan for developing updated flood hazard data for the basin and for producing countywide digital FIRMs for the affected counties and communities within the Tar-Pamlico River Basin.

Following the Final Scoping Meetings (held January 30 and 31, 2001, as discussed above), the Draft Basin Plan will be revised, as necessary, to produce a Final Basin Plan. The Final Basin Plan will contain specific information regarding comments that were received and how the Draft Basin Plan was revised and why. Then the State's Floodplain Mapping Contractor, Watershed Concepts, Inc., will develop a technical and cost proposal to execute the components of the revised Draft Tar-Pamlico River Basin Plan. The Tar-Pamlico River Basin Plan will be finalized and distributed to impacted counties and communities, and the production phase will begin.

The Tar-Pamlico River Basin extends from its headwaters in the north central Piedmont section of North Carolina to the Atlantic Ocean. Most of the upstream portion (Tar River) is freshwater, whereas the downstream portion (the Pamlico River) is entirely estuarine. The Tar-Pamlico River Basin is comprised of portions of 19 counties and 53 municipalities.