Affordable Flood Insurance Congress initiated the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) in 1968 to provide affordable flood insurance to citizens of communities that adopt approved flood management regulations. The Federal Insurance Administration (FIA), part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), administers the NFIP. Flood insurance not available in communities that choose not to participate in the NFIP. Eligibility for state and federal post-flooding disaster assistance requires NFIP participation.
To participate in the NFIP, Whatcom County communities must adopt development restrictions for flood-prone areas. Federal guidelines are established as local law in each Whatcom County community. The Flood Damage Prevention Ordinance, Title 17, sets development restrictions for floodplain areas in unincorporated county. Cities and the Lummi Nation administer their own NFIP programs.