July 5, 2007 - Posted at 6:42 p.m. CDT
JONESBORO-"We are paying flood insurance and we've been paying it ever since we moved here. They told us we would be off of it, but we are still paying it right now," said Tawanda Tramble.
Families like her and her husband Terrance, who moved into their home in March, say they would like to know if their home has been cleared from the floodplain.
"Apparently they were supposed to be doing something, and we're still paying for it. So I want to know now if we are out of the flood zone, because we don't want to pay any extra money on something that we could be saving on," said Tramble.
Nearly 700 dollars a year is a big chunk for this family of four.
"I really didn't think the flood insurance was going to be that much. In order for you to have insurance and take care of your home, you have to get the insurance. So I had to pay what I had to pay in order for me to get it," said Terrance Tramble.
Therefore, developer Bruce Burrow stepped forward Tuesday night addressing the issue that affects nearly 500 households.
"When I get a call from a lady that lives in that neighborhood that says, Mr. Burrow I'm on social security. Flood insurance is 35 dollars a month, and I need that for medicine, and I thought you were going to help us. It was time for somebody to speak up," said Burrow.
In May of this year, FEMA approved new floodplain drawings which removed hundreds of residents from the affected area.
But nearly two months later, no one was aware.
"It's just not right to not let them know that there has been a change in the map," said Burrow.
He says he met with Mayor Formon several times to discuss the maps, before bringing it to the full council.
"I don't have any problem with the council at all. I never met with the council to discuss this issue. So to bring the council in and say it's there fault is disingenuous to the council," said Burrow.
He says, it was the mayor's lack of action that made him take his own.
"I think to just say we want to be certain before we release this stuff is a disservice to the citizens. What they need to do is go with what's on the paper now, what is the facts now--not what could happen in the future," said Burrow.
Burrow says it's time to stop being reactive.
"It's a tough job being the mayor. Everybody's pulling at you and you've got all of those things going, but it's more than smiling and shaking hands. You've got to do some work. The work of the people is letting people know," said Burrow.
He says letting the people know, is the real reason any of this came to be in the first place.
"When you are dealing with 500 dollars a year or a lady where it's the difference in medicine or paying flood insurance when she doesn't have to, that's wrong. I don't apologize for that," said Burrow.
Those most affected by the floodplain revisions are those who currently own mortgages. This is because lenders rely on those drawings by FEMA when deciding whether or not a homebuyer has to purchase flood insurance.
Check out K8's Marsha Mays' story to find out what Mayor Formon had to say.