Nebraska Revised Statute 31-1017

Chapter 31


Department; flood plain management; powers and duties.

The department shall be the official state agency for all matters pertaining to flood plain management. In carrying out that function, the department shall have the power and authority to:

(1) Coordinate flood plain management activities of local, state, and federal agencies;

(2) Receive federal funds intended to accomplish flood plain management objectives;

(3) Prepare and distribute information and conduct educational activities which will aid the public and local units of government in complying with the purposes of sections 31-1001 to 31-1023;

(4) Provide local governments having jurisdiction over flood-prone lands with technical data and maps adequate to develop or support reasonable flood plain management regulation;

(5) Adopt and promulgate rules and regulations establishing minimum standards for local flood plain management regulation. In addition to the public notice requirement in the Administrative Procedure Act, the department shall, at least twenty days in advance, notify the clerks of all cities, villages, and counties which might be affected of any hearing to consider the adoption, amendment, or repeal of such minimum standards. Such minimum standards shall be designed to protect human life, health, and property and to preserve the capacity of the flood plain to discharge the waters of the base flood and shall take into consideration (a) the danger to life and property by water which may be backed up or diverted by proposed obstructions and land uses, (b) the danger that proposed obstructions or land uses will be swept downstream to the injury of others, (c) the availability of alternate locations for proposed obstructions and land uses, (d) the opportunities for construction or alteration of proposed obstructions in such a manner as to lessen the danger, (e) the permanence of proposed obstructions or land uses, (f) the anticipated development in the foreseeable future of areas which may be affected by proposed obstructions or land uses, (g) hardship factors which may result from approval or denial of proposed obstructions or land uses, and (h) such other factors as are in harmony with the purposes of sections 31-1001 to 31-1023. Such minimum standards may, when required by law, distinguish between farm and nonfarm activities and shall provide for anticipated developments and gradations in flood hazards. If deemed necessary by the department to adequately accomplish the purposes of such sections, such standards may be more restrictive than those contained in the national flood insurance program standards, except that the department shall not adopt standards which conflict with those of the national flood insurance program in such a way that compliance with both sets of standards is not possible;

(6) Provide local governments and other state and local agencies with technical assistance, engineering assistance, model ordinances, assistance in evaluating permit applications and possible violations of flood plain management regulations, assistance in personnel training, and assistance in monitoring administration and enforcement activities;

(7) Serve as a repository for all known flood data within the state;

(8) Assist federal, state, or local agencies in the planning and implementation of flood plain management activities, such as flood warning systems, land acquisition programs, and relocation programs;

(9) Enter upon any lands and waters in the state for the purpose of making any investigation or survey or as otherwise necessary to carry out the purposes of such sections. Such right of entry shall extend to all employees, surveyors, or other agents of the department in the official performance of their duties, and such persons shall not be liable to prosecution for trespass when performing their official duties;

(10) Enter into contracts or other arrangements with any state or federal agency or person as defined in section 49-801 as necessary to carry out the purposes of sections 31-1001 to 31-1023; and

(11) Adopt and enforce such rules and regulations as are necessary to carry out the duties and responsibilities of such sections.


Cross References

  • Administrative Procedure Act, see section 84-920.


  • This section requires the Nebraska Natural Resources Commission to adopt, at a minimum, flood plain regulations promulgated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Giger v. City of Omaha, 232 Neb. 676, 442 N.W.2d 182 (1989).