540 Drainage System Maintenance
400 Mapping and Regulations

540
Drainage System Maintenance

Drainage systems are often crucial components to larger floodplain management systems. This activity awards credits for maintaining drainage systems so that they function optimally.

542.a
Channel debris removal (CDR)

Your community can receive credits for inspecting and maintaining natural channels.

Level of effort = high

Overview

Natural channels often plan a large role in community drainage systems. For this element, credit is awarded for thorough and regular maintenance of natural channels. To get credit, they must be inspected annually, after complaints, and after each major storm. Your community must also remove debris after each inspection and keep a record of these inspections and maintenance procedures.

Considerations

You cannot receive credit for projects undertaken with unsecured outside funding.

Documentation

To receive credit for this element, you must provide:

  • Written and dated guidelines for annual inspection and maintenance procedures, including:

    • The person in charge of the program
    • An explanation of inspection procedures, such as when inspections take place and if they differ for manmade or natural channels
    • The debris removal procedures for each inspection
  • A map of the conveyance system and an inventory of each item in the natural conveyance system, including which parts of the drainage system belong to your community and which belong to another agency or private landowner, following these steps:

    • Identify and map the developed area of your community
    • Map the natural conveyance system, including public and private agencies
    • Include all natural channels that appear as blue lines on the U.S. Geological Survey quadrangle and drain more than 40 acres
    • Map the entire drainage system, not just the natural conveyance system
    • Show large underground systems if applicable
    • Label each segment of the conveyance system
    • Develop a list of each segment in the conveyance system
    • Mark the segments that are included in the inspection and maintenance program
  • A record of all inspection and maintenance activities
  • Community Certifications of Compliance with Environmental and Historic Preservation Requirements (CC-EHPs)

For annual recertification:

  • Examples of inspection and maintenance records

Credit Calculation

Max: 200

The impact adjustment is calculated using the following formula:

Number of inspected and maintained items/length of conveyance system / Total number of items/length of community’s full drainage system

542.b
Problem site maintenance (PSM)

Your drainage system likely has problematic sections that require focused attention. You can receive credits for identifying these areas and inspecting them.

Level of effort = high

Overview

Drainage systems can be complex to track. Your community can receive credit for identifying sections of the drainage system that have problems such as dumping, obstruction, or erosion. These sites must be inspected annually and after each major storm. You must also remove debris after each inspection and keep a record of inspections and maintenance procedures.

Considerations

You cannot get credit for projects with unsecured outside funding.

Documentation

To receive credit for this element, you must provide:

  • Written and dated guidelines for annual inspection and maintenance procedures, including:

    • The person in charge of the program
    • The problem at the site
    • An explanation of inspection procedures, such as when inspections take place and if they differ for manmade or natural channels
    • The debris removal procedures for each inspection
  • A map of the conveyance system and an inventory of each item in the natural conveyance system, including which parts of the drainage system belong to your community and which belong to another agency or private landowner, following these steps:

    • Identify and map the developed area of your community
    • Map the natural conveyance system, including public and private agencies
    • Include all natural channels that appear as blue lines on the U.S. Geological Survey quadrangle and drain more than 40 acres
    • Map the entire drainage system, not just the natural conveyance system
    • Show large underground systems if applicable
    • Label each segment of the conveyance system
    • Develop a list of each segment in the conveyance system
    • Mark the segments that are included in the inspection and maintenance program
    • Label the problem site maintenance locations
  • A record of all inspection and maintenance activities for the problem sites, marked as PSM
  • Community Certifications of Compliance with Environmental and Historic Preservation Requirements (CC-EHPs)

For annual recertification:

  • Examples of inspection and maintenance records

Credit Calculation

Max: 50

There is no impact adjustment for this element.

542.c
Capital improvement program (CIP)

Your Capital Improvement Plan could provide opportunities for improving your drainage system.

Level of effort = high

Overview

In addition to regular maintenance, your community can also engage in capital improvement planning around your drainage system to reduce flood and maintenance issues. CIP actions can include enlarging culverts, installing grates to catch debris, protecting banks, building retention basins, or improving the underground system.

The sites in this program can be in the natural or constructed part of the drainage system. There must be a list of sites included in the improvement projects and these projects should be regularly funded. The work done for this element can be included in a stormwater management master plan, a written capital improvement plan, or a drainage plan with proposed projects and an annual budget.

Considerations

You cannot get credit for projects with unsecured outside funding. 542.b Problem site maintenance (PSM) is a prerequisite for this element.

Documentation

To receive credit for this element, you must provide:

  • Excerpts from the capital improvement plan, including:

    • A list of problem sites
    • Recommended mitigation for each site
    • Funding spent each year
    • Documentation of the engineering analysis (if applicable)

Credit Calculation

*Max: 70 *

30 credits are awarded for an ongoing program (CIP1) and 40 credits are awarded for an analysis of the drainage system that includes an evaluation of the 100 year flood (CIP2). There is no impact adjustment for CIP1. The impact adjustment for CIP2 can be calculated using this formula:

Area included in the analysis / Total area of your community

542.d
Stream dumping regulations (SDR)

Does your community enforce stream dumping regulations?

Level of effort = low

Overview

Stream dumping and inappropriate debris disposal can cause serious damage to your drainage systems. For this element, you can receive credits for adopting and enforcing stream dumping regulations that prohibit the disposal of debris in the drainage system. These regulations must be enforced throughout your community by a designated office that receives complaints, monitors the system, and works to enforce the regulation.

You can get additional credit for publicizing these regulations through a notice to all property owners, or by posting signs at problem sites.

Considerations

The work done for this element can be included in 332.a. Outreach Projects (OP) and/or 332.c Program for Public Information (PPI).

Documentation

To receive credit for this element, you must provide:

  • A copy of the regulations, with the acronym SDR marked in the corresponding section of the ordinance
  • A copy of the outreach project and/or Program for Public Information (PPI) with the acronym SDR marked to call out the applicable section (if applicable)

Credit Calculation

Max: 30 for one of the following:

  • 15 credits for prohibiting dumping in the drainage system.
  • 25 credits for prohibiting dumping in the drainage system and publicizing the regulations
  • 30 credits for prohibiting dumping in the drainage system, publicizing the regulations, and including the outreach project in the PPI.

542.e
Storage basin maintenance (SBM)

How does your community maintain your retention, detention, and infiltration basins?

Level of effort = high

Overview

In this element, credit is awarded for annual inspections and maintenance of storage basins. You must have a complaint response and inspection program and be able to conduct maintenance as needed. If your community does not own the basin, you must have an ordinance requiring the owner to inspect and maintain the basin.

Considerations

To get credit, you must also get credit for requiring the maintenance of stormwater management facilities (PUB) under 452.a Stormwater management regulations (SMR). Communities must also have an inspection and maintenance program that conducts inspections once a year, after a complaint, and after each storm that impacts the drainage system.

Documentation

Communities should provide:

  • Written procedures for annual inspection and maintenance of storage basins that include:

    • Person or department responsible for the program
    • Inspection procedures that detail the type of facility, who owns it, and whether it is included in the program
    • Maintenance procedures that detail what can and cannot be removed and the party responsible
    • Description of the inspection and maintenance records
  • Map of the location of all storage basins (public and private)
  • Complete inventory of storage basins
  • Records of the maintenance and inspection activities
  • Community Certifications of Compliance with Environmental and Historic Preservation Requirements (CC-EHPs)

For annual recertification:

  • Example of inspection and maintenance records

Credit Calculation

Max: 120

The impact adjustment for this element is calculated as follows:

Inspected and maintained storage basins / Total storage basins in the community

This CRS guide was produced by CRS professionals and Certified Floodplain Managers to help you navigate the Community Rating System. It is not meant to replace FEMA's official CRS Coordinator's Manual, nor should it supersede the instructions given by your ISO/CRS Specialist.

For additional resources, visit https://crsresources.org/ .