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A. Variances may be issued for new construction, substantial improvement, and other proposed new development necessary for the conduct of a functionally dependent use as set forth in this chapter.

B. The FPA may approve a variance from the standards set forth in this chapter if they find that complying with the requirements of this chapter would create an exceptional hardship to the applicant or the surrounding property owners as the result of unusual physical characteristics of the subject property that are unique to that property and not shared by adjacent parcels.

C. In addition, variances may be issued for the repair or rehabilitation of historic structures upon a determination that the proposed repair or rehabilitation will not preclude the structure's continued designation as an historic structure and the variance is the minimum necessary to preserve the historic character and design of the structure.

D. A variance shall not be approved if it would result in increased flood heights, additional threats to public safety, or extraordinary public expense, create a nuisance, or conflict with existing local laws or ordinances.

E. In all cases, the FPA shall take into consideration the following factors:

1. Danger that materials may be swept onto other lands to the injury of others;

2. Danger of life and property due to flooding or erosion damage;

3. Susceptibility of the proposed facility and its contents to flood damage and the effect of such damage on the existing individual owner and future owners of the property;

4. Importance of the services provided by the proposed facility to the community;

5. Necessity to the facility of a waterfront location, where applicable;

6. Availability of alternative locations for the proposed use which are not subject to flooding or erosion damage;

7. Compatibility of the proposed use with existing and anticipated development;

8. Relationship of the proposed use to the comprehensive plan and floodplain management program for that area;

9. Safety of access to the property in time of flood for ordinary and emergency vehicles;

10. Expected heights, velocity, duration, rate of rise, and sediment transport of the floodwaters expected at the site; and

11. Costs of providing governmental services during and after flood conditions, including maintenance and repair of public utilities and facilities such as sewer, gas, electrical, and water system, and streets and bridges.

F. All variances shall be the minimum necessary considering the flood hazard, to afford relief. "Minimum necessary" means to afford relief with a minimum of deviation from the requirements of this chapter.

G. The FPA may attach such conditions to the granting of variances as they deem necessary to further the purposes of this chapter.

H. The issuance of a variance is for floodplain management purposes only. Insurance premium rates are determined by statute according to actuarial risk and will not be modified by the granting of a variance.

I. Any applicant to whom a variance is granted shall be given written notice that:

1. The issuance of a variance to construct a structure below the base flood level will result in increased premium rates for flood insurance up to amounts as high as twenty-five dollars ($25.00) for one hundred dollars ($100.00) of insurance coverage; and

2. Such construction below the base flood level increases risks to life and property. It is recommended that a copy of the notice shall be recorded by the Floodplain Administrator in the Office of the County of Alameda Recorder and shall be recorded in a manner so that it appears in the chain of title of the affected parcel of land.

J. The Floodplain Administrator shall maintain a record of all variance actions, including justification for their issuance, and report such variances issued in the City's biennial report submitted to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. (Ord. 7108-NS § 1 (part), 2009)