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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, May 19, 2015
Andrew Kinney, Emergency Management Coordinator at KinneyA@co.thurston.wa.us or (360) 867-2827

New Deschutes Flood Map Introduced at June 9 Open House
Revised maps used to set national flood insurance rates for Deschutes-area property owners

It can be hard to imagine the devastation that floods can bring to Thurston County communities as warm summer weather sets in, but that's exactly what emergency management officials will do on Tuesday, June 9 when they host an open house for the updated Flood Insurance Rate Maps for the Deschutes River watershed.

"We know flood insurance is probably the last thing on people's minds when the sun is out and summer is around the corner. But if you wait until the flood waters are at your front door to think about how to protect your home and property, it's too late," said Andrew Kinney, Thurston County Emergency Management Coordinator.

The June 9 open house will focus on preliminary revised maps for the Deschutes River watershed area that show some changes to designated Special Flood Hazard Areas in the watershed, and also show changes to the insurance premium risk zones, which are used to help determine the costs of the monthly insurance premiums that watershed property owners will pay for national flood insurance coverage.

"We're really encouraging Deschutes watershed residents and property owners to come to the open house and examine these preliminary map revisions, because it will directly affect their flood insurance rates and will tell them if their property is in a known high-risk area," said Kinney.

County emergency management officials will be joined by staff from the City of Tumwater and from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to discuss the latest insurance map revisions with watershed residents, property owners, and insurance agents. The public is invited to attend and register their comments or concerns about the updated insurance premium "risk zones," the data that's used to help determine those risk zone designations, and how those revised zones may affect their property.

The June 9 open house will begin at 5:30 p.m. and will be at the Thurston County Emergency Coordination Center on Tilley Road South, located just south of the Olympia Regional Airport runway. The public is invited to attend, and property owners within the designated Deschutes River floodplain area will receive a postcard in the coming week with more information about the open house. Those who register to attend the open house meeting in advance can have their property information printed out and available to discuss with experts during the open house. To register, email Karen Axtmann at AxtmanK@co.thurston.wa.us, or call the Thurston County Emergency Management Division at (360) 867-2800

WHAT:Deschutes Flood Map Open House

WHEN: Tuesday, June 9 at 5:30 p.m.

WHERE:Thurston County Emergency Coordination Center at 9521 Tilley Road S in Olympia, 98512



County Commissioners:

Carolina Mejia
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3