The Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved a policy change that will allow permanent road repairs for flooded roads in Region 8 which includes North Dakota.

The change had been requested at a community meeting in Jamestown May 15 held by U.S. Sens. Kevin Cramer and John Hoeven, R-North Dakota. Cramer announced the change Friday.

Previously, FEMA would only allow temporary repairs to flooded roads that would then need to be removed after the floodwater receded. The change will allow FEMA to participate in road grade raises for routes that provide emergency or sole access for residents in the area.

The community meeting had also requested that FEMA change its participation level from 75% to 90% for flooding disasters last fall and this spring. Currently FEMA will pay 75% with 10% covered by the state of North Dakota leaving a 15% local share for any flooded road project.

That request was not acted upon by FEMA.