The Board of Selectmen last week voted to adopt an updated South Central Regional Multi-Jurisdiction Hazard Mitigation Plan.
The plan, an addendum of the hazard mitigation plan put in place several years ago, suggests actions for improved mitigation in town and sets the community up to be eligible for funding to reduce hazard risks long term.
“By memorializing a plan ... we then set ourselves up for, God-forbid, if there is a disaster — a flood, a hurricane down the road — then we would be able to qualify potentially for additional FEMA money to help those residences or businesses that may be affected by what sometimes can be referred to as 100-year storm,” First Selectman Michael Freda said.
The plan identified trees, inland and riverine flooding, and urban flooding as hazards of concern in town.
Flooding along the Muddy River is a primary worry, as many areas and roads along the river are impacted by either the threat of flooding or regular flooding already.
“One of our vulnerable areas in past years has been the Muddy River. And years ago, back in 2011, the Muddy River flooded, homes over on Pine River Road backyards were flooded,” Freda said.
The plan notes several residential and commercial properties along the river as being vulnerable, including Pine River Road, where it reported the town receives many calls from residents for even minor rain and snow events.
Solutions recommended by the plan include focusing on older development instead of new construction in the area, continuing to coordinate upstream dredging and flood control with the town of Wallingford and continuing to examine ways to remove sediment build-up.