The initial stage of flood risk data collection efforts to support creation of the first-ever Regional Flood Plan for Texas’ Trinity River Basin will wrap up later this month. This critical effort is being undertaken by the Trinity Regional Flood Planning Group (Trinity RFPG), a group formed as part of the new regional flood planning process authorized by the Texas Legislature in 2019 in the wake of historic statewide flooding.
The Planning Group recently requested a variety of technical, flood-related data from cities, counties and other entities across the region, in order to identify existing and future flood risks in local areas.
Members of the public are also encouraged to participate in this important, new planning process, which is aimed at better managing flood risk to reduce loss of life and property from flooding.
The detailed information being collected now will be used to develop strategies to reduce local flood risks. Ultimately, this planning effort is important and relevant to regional stakeholders because projects included in the 2023 Trinity Regional Flood Plan will have access to State funding.
Current and future public participation opportunities include:
- Now through July 24, 2021, identification of flood-prone areas on the interactive map available via the button at the top of the Trinity RFPG website’s Public Comment page https://trinityrfpg.org/public-comment/ (or directly at https://trinity.halff.com)
- On the data collection microsite, go to the “Member of the Public?” area on the righthand side of the page, enter your information and click the “Take me to the map” link to access the map and add location pins to mark flooding issues or concerns
- Submission of public comments via the Trinity RFPG website, www.trinityrfpg.org
- Subscription to the Planning Group’s future e-updates through the “Subscribe” form on the website homepage
- Submission of comments or questions to the Trinity RFPG email address, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Participation in Planning Group public meetings, for which information is available on the Trinity RFPG website
- The next meeting is currently scheduled for Thursday, August 19, 2021, at a time and location to be announced soon
“The first Regional Flood Plan, and any future plans at the regional or state level, will only be as good as the input provided,” said Glenn Clingenpeel, Chair of the Trinity RFPG and Executive Manager, Technical Services and Basin Planning, with the Trinity River Authority. “That is why we strongly encourage all interested parties, including not only cities and counties but also any individuals or groups potentially affected by flooding issues, to participate in this time-sensitive effort. It is vitally important that all communities throughout the Basin have an active voice in Texas’ new, bottom-up planning process, since much of the information we need is best known by local leaders and residents.”
About the Trinity Regional Flood Planning Group and the Flood Planning Process Statewide
The Trinity RFPG is among 15 regional flood planning groups designated in April 2020 by the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB), as a result of Senate Bill 8, 86th Texas Legislature, which established a groundbreaking, new regional and state flood planning process for the state. At the same time, the Texas Legislature also created a new flood financial assistance fund and charged the TWDB with administering the fund. The Flood Infrastructure Fund, approved by Texas voters in November 2019, will be used to finance flood-related projects.
The Trinity RFPG is responsible for creating its first Regional Flood Plan by January 10, 2023. This plan will then become part of Texas’ first-ever State Flood Plan by September 1, 2024. After this first round of flood planning, each of the regional flood planning groups will update their plans every five years.
The initial members of the Trinity RFPG were designated by the TWDB last year. The Planning Group’s membership includes at least one voting member from each of the following interest categories: the public, counties, municipalities, industry, agriculture, environment, small business, electric-generating utilities, river authorities, water districts, water utilities and flood districts. In April 2021, the Trinity RFPG engaged a technical consultant team led by Halff Associates to support its planning effort.
The Trinity RFPG’s planning region (Trinity River Basin, or Region 3) has an estimated population of almost 8 million and spans a nearly 18,000-square-mile, 38-county region from Cooke County in the north to Chambers County on the Gulf Coast.