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News Section: National Government



Proposed Spending Bill Delays Flood Insurance Hikes

Legislation Could Help Nearly 80,000 Homeowners in FL-16

Published Wednesday, January 15, 2014 12:05 am

WASHINGTON – Pending increases in federal flood insurance rates will be delayed for most policyholders nationwide under the 2014 Omnibus spending bill expected to be approved by Congress this week. The $1.1 trillion bill funds government up to October of this year, avoiding another shutdown showdown.    

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The expansive bill bars FEMA from using its 2014 funding allotment to implement higher flood insurance premiums for existing policyholders who, due to remapping, find themselves below elevation and facing increased premiums. 

According to a FEMA Actuary, these delayed rates could affect 78,812 policyholders out of 109,273 total NFIP policyholders in Florida’s 16th District.

The Omnibus spending bill to be voted on this week states that “none of the funds made available in this Act may be used to implement, carry out, administer, or enforce section 1308(h) of the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968.”

“Hundreds of thousands of Floridians are experiencing untenable rate increases that threaten to wash away property values and push people out of their homes,” said Vern Buchanan (R-Sarasota), who co-chairs Florida’s congressional delegation. Buchanan has pushed for consideration of the unique impact on Florida, a state that holds 37 percent of the nation’s 5.6 million flood policies – more than any other state.

“This bill will provide immediate relief for most policyholders while providing time for Congress to work on a permanent solution that reforms the nation’s flood insurance program.”

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