Oran considers getting into flood program

Thursday, June 15, 2006

ORAN, Mo. -- After nearly 21 years of not participating in the National Flood Insurance Program, Oran city leaders are considering getting the town back in the program.

Oran's participation in the program was suspended Sept. 18, 1985, when the city failed to adopt a flood-plain management ordinance.

A small section of the town along two creeks is within the 100-year flood plain. Most of the town isn't affected by not having the insurance.

"It's not been a big problem. We've just got a small area that runs through the town that's in the flood zone," said Oran Mayor Tom Urhahn.

Urhahn said the lack of participation in the program has caused problems for some homeowners who want to buy, sell or build a home in the flood plain.

Urhahn said there's a possibility that the parts of Oran currently in a flood zone may also have changed with alterations to the city's drainage ditches. The main ditch through town now has a branch that takes floodwater outside the city limits, he said.

Urhahn, a 58-year resident of Oran, said that even during the heaviest rains the creek stays in its banks.

The last flood zone map for Oran was drawn up in 1985. The Missouri State Emergency Management Agency said there are no plans at this time to redraw Oran's map.

-- Matt Sanders

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