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Floodplain Professional Spotlight: Vincent Palmieri | Brick, New Jersey

January 17, 2024
Meghan Finlayson

Vincent Palmieri, the Planning Analyst and Environmental Commission Secretary for the Township of Brick Planning Department, is a dedicated professional and lifelong resident of Brick. His diverse responsibilities include CRS and HUD CDBG reviews, and Planning Board and Zoning Board assessments. Vincent also contributes his expertise to various committees, holding key roles in floodplain management and environmental initiatives. He finds his role fulfilling as it allows him to collaborate with fellow professionals, emergency management personnel, and the local residents. Beyond his role, he's pursuing a Masters in Urban & Regional Planning at Rowan University and working toward his CFM certification. He appreciates Brick’s unique blend of a big-town atmosphere coupled with a strong sense of community, traditions, and shared pride, making Brick a place he's proud to call home.

We had an inspiring conversation with Vincent, where he shared some of the initiatives that he’s most excited about in his work at the Township. 

Resident Communication and Outreach

Vincent's commitment to floodplain management is fueled by a genuine concern for the safety and well-being of Brick’s residents. He strives to ensure that the community is well-informed about historical flood events and the warning signs, enabling them to be adequately prepared. 

To that end, the team at Brick consistently sends out updated mailers each year and organizes engaging community events. One noteworthy initiative emerged after Superstorm Sandy. Brick partnered with Barnegat Bay, New Jersey, to create an annual tradition. This event, hosted at a public venue, includes a screening of the documentary "DRIFT" followed by an informative session and discussions. It has become a successful platform for residents to inquire about flood risk and insurance, and to enhance their understanding of the community.

In light of the recent influx of new families to Brick during the COVID-19 pandemic, Vincent is committed to expanding outreach efforts to this demographic. He acknowledged that many newcomers may not fully grasp the significance of flood insurance and mitigation measures and it is a priority to raise awareness in this community.

Vin's dedication to bridging the gap in flood risk knowledge reflects his commitment to empowering those who may benefit from this vital information. He also puts an emphasis on community cohesion within neighborhoods and regions, making preserving this interconnectedness a fundamental goal.  

Innovation and New Technology

Brick is also dedicated to fostering innovation within the government. They conduct quarterly meetings with the floodplain management planning committee, to discuss innovative ideas and strategies. Additionally, they host an annual simulation exercise to test their emergency response capabilities. This year, the simulation focused on a dam break scenario, allowing them to collaboratively devise action plans across various departments, including the office of emergency management, businesses, planners, and neighboring communities.

Data-driven insights and tools also enable the team to better understand the community, communicate effectively, and drive efficiency. They utilize aerial imaging software like Nearmap to study natural shorelines, track trends, and monitor erosion. In addition, Forerunner serves as a valuable tool for enhancing internal efficiency and empowering residents.

“My favorite thing about Forerunner is the public website. When residents come to Town Hall with any questions on their flood risk, I pull up the software and show them their property profile, data, documentation, and designated flood zone. It makes for an informed discussion and helps build trust between the local government and the people of Brick.” Vin noted.

Furthermore, Forerunner has played a pivotal role helping them maintain their CRS class 5 status, which translates to a substantial 20-25% discount on flood insurance for residents. Vin utilizes Forerunner to review Elevation Certificates, identifying errors and potential issues, ensuring a smooth ISO review process.

Vincent’s dedication to floodplain management and commitment to the well-being of the Brick community is admirable. His passion for outreach ensures that residents are well-informed and prepared for potential flood events, especially newcomers. Moreover, his focus on innovation, collaboration, and the use of data-driven tools reflects Brick's dedication to improving efficiency and empowering the community.  

To learn more about our partnership with Brick you can reference our case study here!

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