|Federal Information & News Dispatch, Inc.|
Chairman Denham, Ranking Member Norton, and members of the Subcommittee, thank you for the opportunity to speak with you today regarding the importance of the enactment and enforcement of strong statewide building codes.
The centerpiece of our research program is the
Among IBHS' highest priorities is the adoption and enforcement of strong, mandatory statewide building codes - that is why we support H.R. 2069, the Safe Building Code Incentive Act. Like other effective mitigation measures, strong building codes can save lives, promote long-term fiscal stability, reduce public sector response and recovery costs, protect the environment, and create a more resilient society.
Last year, the federal government issued a record 99 Major Disaster Declarations in response to weather-related events in 35 states and two U.S. territories. The litany of disasters included floods, hurricanes and tropical storms, landslides, severe winter storms, tornadoes, wildfires, and even an earthquake that was felt here in
IBHS strongly agrees with the recently released
Given its important societal benefits, mitigation is a public health objective, economic imperative and humanitarian obligation. Every region of our country is vulnerable to one or more potentially devastating natural hazards; this is why improving disaster mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery must be a national priority.
* Mitigation encourages personal responsibility by providing the tools that people need to protect themselves and their families from harm. In this regard, there are well-documented physical and property protection measures that homeowners and businesses should take to reduce damage and dislocation from almost every type of natural disaster. In addition, all Americans should have a disaster essentials kit, as well as an emergency evacuation plan that includes food, water, communications tools, and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least three days.