THAYER -- After three years of trying to get a new flood hazard study, Thayer Alderman Joe Barbee may have finally completed his mission.
In a letter dated Feb. 19, Michael Biggs with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Little Rock, Ark., sent Barbee information about how the city should go about asking for a new flood hazard study of the Warm Fork River in Thayer.
Last month, Barbee announced the revised flood plain maps were available at city hall, but he was still not satisfied with the changes in the new maps.
They were revised by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Barbee said the flood plain was reduced some, but the residents east of Highway 63 as well as downtown Thayer are still in the flood plain.
In the letter from the Corps, Biggs asked that the city request a re-evaluation of the floodway from the mouth of the Warm Fork River to the bridge on Highway 63.
The letter said the Corps could designate what part of the river they would like to study but requested they try to use landmarks and number of miles. Biggs said the city should say they understood the study would be 100 percent funded by the Corps.
"If this study should become a reality it will enhance the possibility of getting a more fair and balanced flood plain map. I understand the funding for the project will be coming from President Obama's stimulus package," Barbee said.
There are many reasons why Thayer residents want the flood plain maps revised.
"People are having a hard time mortgaging their property without getting flood plain insurance. It is very expensive. In some cases people can't even sell their property because they don't have flood plain insurance and many people in our community cannot afford it," the alderman said.