The town of Hull has just passed an innovative incentive program to encourage builders to elevate new and renovated structures above predicted floodwaters. The program offers applicants a $500 credit to be used towards building department permit fees if the builder elevates the structure at least two feet above the highest federal or state requirement. For more on the benefits of freeboard, read our article on it here.
This was a creative solution to the challenge of how to encourage safer building without passing new building regulations (in Massachusetts, the state has complete control over building codes). This new incentive, which stemmed from the town’s work with the StormSmart Coasts program in the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management, was passed unanimously by the town’s leadership (Board of Selectmen).