ARTICLE III. DEFINITIONS

SECTION 3.0 DEFINITIONS

A Zone: means an approximate delineation of a Special Flood Hazard Area in which floodway boundaries and Base Flood Elevations have not been established.

Accessory Use: means a use which is incidental and subordinate to the principal use of the parcel of land on which it is located.

Accessory structure, low-cost and small. A structure that is:

1.  Solely for the parking of no more than 2 cars; or limited storage (small, low cost sheds); and

2.  the structure is less than 1000 square feet in size.

Active Alluvial Fan Hazard: means an active alluvial fan flooding is a type of flood hazard that occurs only on alluvial fans. It is characterized by flow path uncertainty so great that this uncertainty cannot be set aside in realistic assessments of flood risk or in the reliable mitigation of the hazard. An active alluvial fan flooding hazard is indicated by three related criteria: (A) Flow path uncertainty below the hydrographic apex, (B) Abrupt deposition and ensuing erosion of sediment as a stream or debris flow loses it competence to carry material eroded from a steeper, upstream source area, and (C) An environment where the combination of sediment availability, slope and topography creates a hazardous condition for which elevation on fill will not reliably mitigate the risk.

Alluvial Fan: means a geomorphologic feature characterized by a cone or fan-shaped deposit of boulders, gravel and fine sediments that have been eroded from mountain slopes, transported by flood flows and then deposited in the valley floors and which is subject to flash flooding, high velocity flows, debris flows, erosion, sediment movement and deposition and channel migration.

Alluvial Fan Flooding: means flooding occurring on the surface of an alluvial fan which originates at the apex and is characterized by high-velocity flows, sediment transport and deposition, and unpredictable flow paths.

Alluvial Fan High Hazard Area (AFHH): means an area of active alluvial fan flooding that is reserved to convey and receive sediment and floodwater without altering and thereby increasing the distribution of hazard across the fan to inactive areas and to areas downslope.

Alluvial Fan Uncertain Flow Distribution Area (AFUFD): means a transitional area for sheet flooding and channelized flow located below the AFHH area.

Approximate Alluvial Fan Floodways (AAFF): means a major conveyance corridors defined within AFUFD and AFZA areas for unimpeded through flow of floodwater and sediment.

Alluvial Fan Zone A (AFZA): means an area of inactive alluvial fan flood characterized by flooding along stable flow paths and sheet flow or sheet flooding. These stable flow paths may still be subject to erosion hazards, channel bed and bank scour, and fill.

Approximate Study: means a graphic illustration of a delineation of the floodplain by the Floodplain Administrator made from the most reliable sources available where neither a floodplain nor a floodway has been determined by detailed methodology.

Apex: means a point on an alluvial fan below which the flow of the major stream that formed the fan becomes unpredictable and alluvial fan flooding may occur.

Appeal. means a request for a review of the floodplain administrator’s interpretation of any provision of this ordinance or a request for a variance.

Area Drainage Master Study (ADMS): means a study to develop hydrology for a watershed, to define watercourses, identify potential flood problem areas, drainage problems and recommend solutions and standards for sound floodplain and stormwater management. The ADMS will identify alternative solutions to a given flooding or drainage problem.

Area Drainage Master Plan (ADMP): means a plan which identifies the preferred alternatives of those identified in an ADMS. An ADMP provides minimum criteria and standards for flood control and drainage relating to land use and development.

Area of Jurisdiction: means the 100-year delineated floodplains in the incorporated and unincorporated areas of Pinal County, including public lands, excluding those incorporated areas of cities or towns which have elected to assume floodplain management powers and duties pursuant to A.R.S §48-3610. For floodplain Management purposes, area of jurisdiction includes watercourses and contributing watersheds with flows greater than 200 cfs (cubic feet per second) in the unincorporated areas of the county.

Area of Shallow Flooding. means an area with flood depths from one to three feet where a clearly defined channel does not exist, the path of flooding is indeterminate, and where ponding may be evident.

Area of Special Flood Hazard. means the land in the floodplain within a community subject to a one percent or greater chance of flooding in any given year. These areas are designated as Zone A, AE, AO, AH and A1-30 on the Flood Insurance Rate Map and other areas determined by the criteria adopted by the director of ADWR. (See" Special Flood Hazard Area")

Base Flood. means the flood having a one percent chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year.

Basement. Any area of the building having its floor sub-grade - i.e., below ground level - on all sides.

Board: means the Board of Directors of the Pinal County Flood Control District.

Clearing/Grubbing: means removal of vegetation without disturbance of existing land surface contours.

Delineated Floodplain: means a graphic illustration of the area susceptible to inundation by a 100-year flood based upon the results of an authorized study and which is included on either the Flood Management Maps for Pinal County or the Flood Insurance Rate Maps, or both.

Community. means any state, area or political subdivision thereof, or any Indian tribe or authorized tribal organization, or authorized native organization, which has authority to adopt and enforce floodplain management regulations for the areas within its jurisdiction.

Development. means any man-made change to property, including but not limited to buildings or other structures, mining, dredging, filling, grading, paving, excavation or drilling operations, or storage of materials or equipment.

District: means the Pinal County Flood Control District.

Encroachment. means the advance or infringement of uses, plant growth, fill, excavation, buildings, permanent structures or development into a floodplain, which may impede or alter the flow capacity of a floodplain.

Erosion Control Zone: means a land area adjoining a body of water or adjacent to or located partially or wholly within a delineated floodplain which due to the soil instability, is likely to suffer flood-related erosion damage.

Erosion Setback: means the minimum horizontal distance between a structure and a channel bank necessary to protect the structure from flood related erosion damage.

Exempt Use: means any use of the delineated floodplain specifically exempted from this Regulation by applicable law.

Fill: means the placement of fill material at a specified location to bring the ground surface up to a desired elevation.

Fill Material: means natural sands, dirt, soil and rock. For the purposes of floodplain management, fill material may include concrete, cement, soil cement, brick or similar material as approved by the Floodplain Administrator on a case by case basis.

Flood or Flooding. means a general and temporary condition of partial or complete inundation of normally dry land areas from: (1) the overflow of flood waters; (2) the unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source; and/or (3) the collapse or subsidence of land along the shore of a lake or other body of water as a result of erosion or undermining caused by waves or currents of water exceeding anticipated cyclical levels or suddenly caused by an unusually high water level in a natural body of water, accompanied by a severe storm or by an unanticipated force of nature, such as flash flood or by some similarly unusual and unforeseeable event which results in flooding as defined in this definition.

Flood Boundary and Floodway Map (FBFM)- The floodplain management map issued by FEMA that depicts, based on detailed flood hazard analyses, the boundaries of the 1-percent-annual-chance (100-year) and the 0.2-percent-annual-chance (500-year) floodplains and, when appropriate, the regulatory floodway. The FBFM does not show flood insurance risk zones or BFEs

Flood Hazard Zone: means any land area located partially or wholly within a delineated floodplain susceptible to flood related damage as designated on the Flood Management Maps. Such flood hazard zones may include but not be limited to areas highly susceptible to erosion, stream meander sensitivity, moveable bed, scour, wave action, and subsidence.

Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM). means the official map on which the Federal Insurance Administration has delineated both the areas of special flood hazards and the risk premium zones applicable to the community.

Flood Insurance Study (FIS). means the official report provided by the Federal Insurance Administration. The report includes flood profiles, FIRM, FBFM and the water surface elevation of the base flood.

Floodplain or Flood-Prone Area. means any land area susceptible to being inundated by water from any source. (See Flood or Flooding)

Floodplain Administrator. means the community official designated by title to administer and enforce the floodplain management regulations.

Floodplain Management. means the operation of an overall program of corrective and preventive measures for reducing flood damage, including but not limited to emergency preparedness plans, flood control works and floodplain management regulations.

Floodproofing. means any combination of structural and non-structural additions, changes or adjustments to structures which reduce or eliminate flood damage to real estate or improved real property, water and sanitary facilities, structures and their contents.

Flood-Related Erosion. means the collapse or subsidence of land along the shore of a lake or other body of water as a result of undermining caused by waves or currents of water exceeding anticipated cyclical levels or suddenly caused by an unusually high water level in a natural body of water, accompanied by a severe storm, or by an unanticipated force of nature, such as a flash flood or an abnormal tidal surge, or by some similarly unusual and unforeseeable event which results in flooding.

Floodway. means the channel of a river or other watercourse and the adjacent land areas that must be reserved in order to discharge the base flood without cumulatively increasing the water surface elevation more than one foot. Also referred to as "Regulatory Floodway."

Floodway Fringe. means that area of the floodplain on either side of the "Regulatory Floodway" where encroachment may be permitted.

Grading: means disturbance of existing land contours.

Hazardous Waste: means garbage, refuse, sludge from a waste treatment plant, water supply treatment plant or air pollution control facility, or other discarded materials, including solid, liquid, semisolid or contained gaseous material, resulting from industrial, commercial, mining, and agricultural operations or from community activities which because of its quantity, concentration, or physical, chemical or infectious characteristics may cause or significantly contribute to an increase in mortality or an increase in serious irreversible or incapacitating irreversible illness or pose a substantial present or potential hazard to human health or the environment if improperly treated, stored, transported, disposed of or otherwise managed or any waste identified as hazardous pursuant to A.R.S. §49-922. Hazardous waste does not include solid or dissolved materials in irrigation return flows or industrial discharges which are point sources subject to permits under §402 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (P.L. 92-500; 86 STAT. 816) as amended, or source, special nuclear or by-product material as defined by the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (68 STAT. 919), as amended.

Hardship. Related to Section 6.0 "Variances", of this ordinance means the exceptional hardship which would result from a failure to grant the requested variance. The governing body requires that the variance be exceptional, unusual and peculiar to the property involved. Mere economic or financial hardship alone is not exceptional. Inconvenience, aesthetic considerations, physical handicaps, personal preferences or the disapproval of one’s neighbors likewise cannot, as a rule, qualify as an exceptional hardship. All of these problems can be resolved through other means without granting a variance, even if the alternative is more expensive, or requires the property owner to build elsewhere or put the parcel to a different use than originally intended.

Highest Adjacent Grade. means the highest natural elevation of the ground surface prior to construction next to the proposed walls of a structure.

Historic Structure. means any structure that is:

A.  Listed individually in the National Register of Historic Places (a listing maintained by the Department of Interior) or preliminarily determined by the Secretary of the Interior (Secretary) as meeting the requirements for individual listing on the National Register;

B.  Certified or preliminarily determined by the Secretary as contributing to the historical significance of a registered historic district or a district preliminarily determined by the Secretary to qualify as a registered historic district;

C.  Individually listed on a state inventory of historic places in states with historic preservation programs which have been approved by the Secretary; or

D.  Individually listed on a local inventory of historic places in communities with historic preservation programs that have been certified either:

a.  by an approved state program as determined by the Secretary; or

b.  directly by the Secretary in states without approved programs.

Inactive Alluvial Fan: means an alluvial fan where flood water typically is along incised channels and adjacent stable land.

Lowest Floor. means the lowest floor of the lowest enclosed area, including basement. An unfinished or flood resistant enclosure, usable solely for parking of vehicles, building access or storage in an area other than a basement area is not considered a building’s lowest floor, provided that such enclosure is not built so as to render the structure in violation of the applicable non-elevation design requirements of this ordinance.

Mobile/ Manufactured Home. means a structure, transportable in one or more sections, which is built on a permanent chassis and is designed for use with or without a permanent foundation when connected to the required utilities. For floodplain management purposes, the term "Mobile/ Manufactured Home" also includes park trailers, travel trailers and other similar vehicles placed on a site for greater than 180 consecutive days. For flood insurance purposes the term "Mobile/Manufactured Home" does not include park trailers, travel trailers, and other similar vehicles.

Natural and Beneficial Functions of Floodplains: Includes, but is not limited to the following: natural flood and sediment storage and conveyance, water quality maintenance, groundwater recharge, biological productivity, fish and wildlife habitat, harvest of natural and agricultural products, recreation opportunities, and areas for scientific study and outdoor education. Effective date of the adopted floodplain delineation in which the land, building or permanent structure is located, or August 3, 1984, the effective date of A.R.S. §48-3601 ET SEQ., whichever is the earliest date.

New Construction. means for the purposes of determining insurance rates, structures for which the "start of construction" commenced on or after the effective date of an initial FIRM or after December 31, 1974, whichever is later, and includes any subsequent improvements to such structures. For floodplain management purposes, "new construction" means structures for which the "start of construction" commenced on or after the effective date of a floodplain management regulation adopted by a community and includes any subsequent improvements to such structures.

Obstruction. means anything, including but is not limited to, any dam, wall, wharf, embankment, levee, dike, pile, abutment, protection, excavation, channelization, bridge, conduit, culvert, building, wire, fence, rock, gravel, refuse, fill, structure, vegetation or other material in, along, across or projecting into any watercourse which may alter, impede, retard or change the direction and/or velocity of the flow of water, or due to its location, its propensity to snare or collect debris carried by the flow of water or its likelihood of being carried downstream.

One-Hundred Year Flood. means the flood having a one percent chance of being equaled or exceeded in any given year.

Person. means an individual or the individual’s agent, a firm, partnership, association or corporation, municipality, or an agent of the aforementioned groups, or this state or its agencies or political subdivisions.

Recreation Vehicle: means any vehicle or portable unit designed for living, sleeping, housekeeping or office purposes which is: a) not more than forty (40) feet in length or eight (8) feet in width; b) transportable on its own chassis; and c) maintained in a readily transportable condition at all times. d) Be on site for fewer than 180 consecutive days. This definition includes motorized and non-motorized vehicles, travel trailers, camping trailers, but does not include mobile/manufactured homes or buildings as defined by this Regulation.

Regulatory Flood Elevation. means an elevation one foot above the base flood elevation for a watercourse for which the base flood elevation has been determined and shall be determined by the criteria developed by the director of water resources for all other watercourses.

Solid Waste: means any garbage, trash, rubbish, refuse, sludge from a waste treatment plant, water supply treatment plant or pollution control facility and other discarded material, including solid, liquid, semisolid or contained gaseous material but not including domestic sewage or hazardous waste.

Solid Waste Landfill: means either a public or private facility at which solid waste is placed on or in land for the purpose of long-range storage or disposal. Solid waste landfill does not include a land application unit, surface impoundment, injection well, compost pile or agricultural on-site disposal areas covered under A.R.S §49-766.

Special Flood Hazard Area. means an area in the floodplain subject to a 1 percent or greater chance of flooding in any given year or an area with flood related erosion hazards. It is shown on a Flood Boundary and Floodway Map or Flood Insurance Rate Map as Zone A, AO, A1-A30, AE, A99, or, AH.

Start of Construction. Includes substantial improvement, and means the date the building permit was issued, provided the actual start of construction, repair, reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition, placement or other improvement was within 180 days of the permit date. The actual start means either the first placement of permanent construction of a structure on a site, such as the pouring of slab or footings, the installation of piles, the construction of columns or any work beyond the stage of excavation, or the placement of a manufactured home on a foundation. Permanent construction does not include land preparation, such as clearing, grading and filling, nor does it include the installation of streets and/or walkways, nor does it include excavation for a basement, footings, piers or foundations or the erection of temporary forms, nor does it include the installation on the property of accessory buildings, such as garages or sheds not occupied as dwelling units or not part of the main structure. For a substantial improvement, the actual start of construction means the first alteration of any wall, ceiling, floor or other structural part of a building, whether or not that alteration affects the external dimensions of the building.

Structure. means a walled and roofed building, including a gas or liquid storage tank, which is principally above ground, as well as a manufactured home.

Substantial Damage. means damage of any origin sustained by a structure whereby the cost of restoring the structure to its before damaged condition would equal or exceed 50 %of the market value of the structure before the damage occurred.

Substantial Improvement. means any repair, reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition or other improvement of a structure, the estimated cost of each repair which as determined by a licensed contractor equals or exceeds 50 percent of the fair market value or the appraised value as determined by a competent appraiser whichever may be higher of the building or structure either: 1) before the improvement or rehabilitation is started, or 2) if the building or structure has been damaged by any origin and is being restored, before the damage occurred. In the case of structures which have been damaged, the value of the rehabilitation or restoration must include the fair market cost of all material and labor required to return the structure to its pre-damaged condition, regardless of the actual work performed. "Substantial improvement" is considered to occur when the first alteration of any wall, ceiling, floor or other structural part of the building or structure commences, whether or not that alteration affects the external dimensions of the building or structure. The term does not include any project for improvement of a building or structure which has been identified by the local building official to correct violations of existing state and local health, sanitary or safety code requirements; nor does it include any alteration of a building or structure listed on the National Register of Historic Places or State Inventory of Historical Places.

Variance. means a grant of relief from the requirements of this ordinance that permits construction or other uses of property in a manner that would otherwise be prohibited by this ordinance.

Violation. means the failure of a structure or other development to be fully compliant with the community’s floodplain management regulations. A structure or other development without the elevation certificate, other certifications or other evidence of compliance required in this ordinance is presumed to be in violation until such time as that documentation is provided.

Watercourse. means a lake, river, creek, stream, wash, arroyo, channel or other topographic feature on or over which waters flow at least periodically. Watercourse includes specifically designated areas in which substantial flood damage may occur.

Watercourse Master Plan: means a hydraulic plan for a watercourse that examines the cumulative impacts of existing development and future encroachment in the floodplain and future development in the watershed on potential flood damages, and establishes technical criteria for subsequent development so as to minimize potential flood damages for all flood events up to and including the one hundred-year flood.