New flood maps concern Pequannock residents

FEMA has recently unveiled new flood maps for the town of Pequannock, and it has left some residents wondering what it will mean for them.

Mike Servideo owns two businesses in town. Both of them were badly damaged by the floodwaters of Hurricane Irene. He was planning on expanding his cigar shop, but worries the new zones will make that process difficult.

FEMA would have to approve any plan and could even require an engineering study before he renovated anything.

"I can't build above it because we can't increase the parking spots. I can't build a stilt building next to it," he says. "That building stays just the way it is, so the value of that building is worthless."

The flooding problem in Pequannock has become so bad over the last several years that some homes have been bought out by the government and completely torn down. Others have been elevated so they are out of harm's way.

Homeowners are also worried about the new plans and the value of their homes.

"My home was appraised at $319,000. It was reappraised at $193,000," says homeowner Rich Negri.

Pequannock's town manager has reportedly vowed to challenge FEMA, and the town plans to do its own flood analysis.

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