JACKSON, Miss. – If you live in a flood prone area in Mississippi, you may be glad to know that a bill to delay rising federal flood insurance rates has cleared the U.S. House, and it is now on its way to President Barack Obama’s desk. The Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act passed with bipartisan support Tuesday 306-91.
“Our bill is the result of extensive bipartisan, bicameral work over the past year. This bill is both compassionate and fiscally responsible. From the start, my priority has been to ensure that flood insurance remains affordable and available – in Mississippi and across the country. Our bill meets those goals,” said Miss. Congressman Steven Palazzo.
“Congress never intended to punish responsible homeowners. Yet, that is exactly what FEMA is doing as it implements the law with flawed maps and procedures. These actions are threatening individuals and entire communities. I’m not talking about wealthy waterfront homeowners. In South Mississippi, I’m hearing from teachers, veterans, fishermen, people who work at the shipyards in support of our U.S. Navy.”
The bill makes changes to the Biggert-Waters Act of 2012 which aimed to overhaul National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Under the bill, premiums can no longer increase more than 18 percent annually. It would also push FEMA to restrict rates to no more than one percent of home values. Also, FEMA will need to certify its mapping methodology and it would be required to provide an affordability study of flood prone areas.