"When right wing
"I could not be more thankful that now we have a productive partner in the Governor's office who
"While we have made progress in the six years since Superstorm Sandy made landfall in
"When I look to the future of this state, we need
Announcing changes to the Reconstruction, Rehabilitation, Elevation, and Mitigation (RREM) Program and the Low-to-Moderate Income (LMI) Homeowner Rebuilding Program,
"Six years ago, when Superstorm Sandy hit our coast, people lost their lives, homes and businesses were destroyed, and local infrastructure was devastated," said
"I knew then that I needed to begin the hard work to bring the necessary support and resources to our state to help
"Many people don't even realize their homeowners insurance doesn't cover flooding until they have a flood and find out they are on their own. At a time when more people need flood insurance it is getting too expensive. We can't have families priced out of protection. The SAFE NFIP act works to make flood insurance more affordable, but even more than that it prioritizes making mitigation funding available before a disaster. That means families can be safer, their flood insurance costs go way down, and every dollar spent on mitigation saves taxpayers six dollars after a disaster. But above all, prioritizing mitigation would save families the kind of heartache all of us went through and are still going through because of Sandy," said
The Sandy survivors at the roundtable directly benefited from
The SAFE NFIP Act would extend the federal flood insurance program for six years while instituting a series of sweeping reforms. The bill authorizes significant investment in mitigation and resiliency efforts to reduce flood risk, while addressing critical problems that arose following Superstorm Sandy and other disasters, namely: unsustainability, low participation rates, inaccurate flood maps, an indifference to the benefits of flood control infrastructure, agency mismanagement, unsustainable debt service costs and contractor profiteering.
The Sustainable, Affordable, Fair, and Efficient (SAFE)
NFIP Reauthorization Act of 2017
Long-Term Certainty. Reauthorizes the NFIP for six years, providing certainty for communities.
No Exorbitant Rate Hikes. Ends runaway premium hikes by capping annual increases to 10 percent. Currently, premiums increase by up to 25 percent every year, depressing property values, creating affordability challenges, and discouraging participation in the program.
Cuts Wasteful Expenses to Pay for Investments. Freezes interest payments and establishes new controls for private insurance company compensation in order to reinvest in proactive mitigation efforts and affordability measures, including low-interest loans for homeowners' mitigation projects and affordability vouchers.
Strong Investments in Mitigation. Provides robust funding levels for large-scale, communitywide mitigation efforts, and mitigation assistance programs, which have a 4:1 return on investment and are the most effective way to reduce flood risk.
Expanded Increased Cost of Compliance (ICC) Coverage. Increases the maximum limit for ICC coverage to better reflect the costs of mitigation projects and expands eligibility in order to encourage more proactive mitigation before natural disasters strike.
LiDAR Mapping. Authorizes funding for Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) technology for more accurate mapping of flood risk across the country, reducing confusion and generating better data.
Oversight of Write Your Own (WYO) Companies. Caps compensation for WYO companies to 22.4 percent of written premiums, creates new oversight measures for insurance companies and vendors, and provides
Claims and Appeals Process Reforms Based on Lessons from Sandy. Fundamentally reforms the claims process based on lessons learned after Superstorm Sandy and other disasters, leveling the playing field for policyholders during appeals and litigation by holding
Better Training. Provides for increased training and certification of agents and adjusters to reduce mistakes and improve the customer experience.
Furthering efforts to ensure fairness and expedite
Rebuild by Design, an initiative fueled by
Sens. Menendez and Booker first exposed the problem of widespread lowballing (http://www.menendez.senate.gov/news-and-events/press/menendez-exposes-problems-in-sandy-flood-insurance-claims-process-fema-pledges-to-fix) of flood insurance claims during Congressional hearings he chaired in 2014.