Engineering Department

 Matthew Sutton, PE, CPESC

phone icon (716) 877-8805
fax icon (716) 871-8841
email icon Email


Office Hours

Monday - Friday
8:00am - 4:00pm

map icon 2919 Delaware Ave. Room 20
     Kenmore, NY  14217  

Engineering FAQ's

Our department has flood maps from the Federal Emergency Management Agency National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). We will compare your street address to the NFIP maps and can issue you a statement declaring whether or not you are in a flood zone. Contact the department at (716) 877-8805 for more information.

Sidewalks are replaced by the town only under certain circumstance. If a tree root from a tree that is between the curb and sidewalk has lifted the sidewalk slab, the Highway Department should be contacted at (716) 875-8822. The Highway Department has a Sidewalk Replacement program for tree root damage. You may ask them to investigate your claim and determine if it is eligible for the program.

If a town water line or sewer needed to be repaired and the crews removed the sidewalk for the repair, then the Town Water and Sewer Department will replace the sidewalk. You may contact them at (716) 874-0490).

If the sidewalk is tipped or broken due to age, then you as the property owner are responsible as described in the Town Code Section 183.
When this happens, it is usually because the water being discharged has no place to drain or the ground around your house may need to be graded so water runs away from the walls toward the street. You may contact the Town Building Department at (716) 877-8801 for additional assistance.

Federal Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM)
Since 1982, the Town of Tonawanda has been a participating community in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) by adopting and enforcing a floodplain management local law to reduce future flood damage. In exchange, the NFIP makes federally backed flood insurance available to homeowners, renters and business owners in these communities. Community participation in the NFIP is voluntary. 

The town has been using the 1982 series of Federal Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) provided by FEMA. We have them in both paper and digital form. The ones in digital form can be used to review particular parcels in the town to see if they are in a floodplain. 


Floodplain Development
Any development with the Special Flood Hazard Area, also referred to as the floodplain or 100 year flood zone is highly regulated and must be done is strict accordance with the code. A pdf floodplain development permit  is required from the Town Engineer. Fees apply.

Updated Maps
FEMA is preparing to update their maps of Erie County, including the Town of Tonawanda. On January 20, 2011, the Town of Tonawanda filed an Appeal with FEMA on conditions of discharge calculations for Ellicott Creek and the delineation of the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) south of Ellicott Creek. FEMA has accepted the town's protest regarding the boundary of the preliminary SFHA and has further modified the preliminary maps to reflect a reduced area of the SFHA. 


The next steps in the process would be as follows:

  • If all Town concerns are adequately addressed, FEMA will issue a Letter of Final Determination (LFD) sometime after the formal 30-day response period expires. There is no defined timeframe for issuance of the LFD.
  • The LFD initiates a 6-month “adoption/compliance period” during which the Communities must enact new or modified floodplain management ordinances required for participation in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Adoption of these ordinances is considered to be a Type I action under SEQR and must follow the appropriate approval procedures.
  • The Town will receive a package from NYSDEC with a model ordinance and directions on how to customize it specifically for the Town of Tonawanda and how to proceed with the formal adoption process.
  • A draft Local Law must be submitted back to the NYSDEC within 3 months. NYSDEC recommends that the Town adopt the new Local Law at least one month prior to the deadline. If the Town fails to adopt the new flood plain management regulations, the community will be suspended from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). It is our general understanding that if this should occur, new mortgage applications for buildings within identified flood hazard areas will likely not be approved and existing mortgages may be affected.
  • At the end of the adoption/compliance period, the maps and FIS report will become effective. A target effective date for the LFD has not yet been set.

For more information, view the New York Mapping Status.
Contact Information
Matthew Sutton, PE, CPESC
Town Engineer 
Floodplain Administrator

Fee Schedule (Check or Money Order made payable to "Town of Tonawanda")

Description Fee (2022)
Bid Books for Jobs $100
Storm Water Permit Review $500.00 up to 5 acres
  $850 5 acres to 10 acres
  $75.00 per acre 10 acres and above
Stormwater Construction Inspection - fee due at the start of pre-construction/start up meeting $650.00 up to 5 acres, per year
  $1,000 - 5 acres to 10 acres, per year
  $100.00 per acre 10 acres and above, per year
Public Improvement Permit $500.00 per permit
       Technical Review 4% of estimated cost
       Inspection 10% of estimated cost
Subdivision Application Review $500.00 for 1st acre
  $50.00 per additional acre
Floodplain Development Permit $100.00
  $500.00 deposit for reimbursable cost
Excavation, Removal or Storage of Materials Permit $500.00 for 1st acre
  $50.00 per additional acre
New Sanitary Sewer Connection (> 2,500 gallons per day) $250.00 per gpm (based on the Town's cost to remediate)