President Obama altered the way federally-funded construction projects are treated when he signed Executive Order 13690 into law on January 30, 2015. The Federal Emergency Management Agency is still collecting information from contractors and other agencies to determine the precise guidelines that should be followed in an emergency situation, but the basic premise of the order is to alter the Federal Flood Risk Management Standard (FFMS), which is a critical component of every federally-funded construction project.
Floodplains Have Been Expanded
The order redefines the parameters of a floodplain and changes the elevation as well as the diameter of a floodplain area. These changes will create significant alterations in the way that contractors execute projects and the manner in which federal agencies create project specifications. The larger floodplains mean that contractors and federal agencies will have to compensate for preserving wetlands and other areas that impact a local ecosystem.
Federal Agencies Will Have To React
The Environmental Observer notes that government agencies that normally issue project specifications will have to go through the process of updating all of their policies to reduce or avoid flood risks when putting projects together. This would include any development and construction projects.
It is important to note that this new law affects federal land management projects as well as construction projects. Any federal agency looking to engineer land to make any kinds of changes will now have to expand its floodplain specifications in order to meet the new order criteria.
Only Federal Projects Will Be Affected
The new Executive Order only affects federally-funded construction and development projects, but that will still alter billions of dollars in work. Each road construction project will now have to alter its floodplain criteria, which will significantly alter the way road projects are done. All federal building construction and redevelopment projects will also be affected.
FEMA Will Be Getting Involved
FEMA not only steps in when a flood disaster has occurred, it also works with the states to help prevent floods as well. With the announcement of new flood guidelines, FEMA will have to re-evaluate its state-level flood prevention planning and start the process of updating all of its information. FEMA provides states with flood risk information to help states focus their resources on areas that could provide the greatest flood risk.
In Massachusetts, federal construction guidelines are prominent in road construction projects and newly created environmental initiatives. If you want to get involved in the construction growth that is happening in Massachusetts, then you need to get your contractor supervisor’s license before the newest construction season begins.
The Massachusetts Contractors Academy has everything you need to get prepared for the contractor supervisor’s test. Get started now with the Massachusetts Contractors Academy and you won’t have to pay for your course until you have completed it. It is your no-risk introduction to the rapidly growing world of the Massachusetts construction industry, so get started now and get your career off the ground.
George N Root III is a professional freelance writer who has expertise in topics such as Internet marketing, business, advertising, and personal finance.