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National Flood Insurance Program

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NEWS
October 14, 2008 | By Anthony R. Wood INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Barely noticed in the clamor over the financial industry bailout, a multibillion-dollar rescue operation is under way in Washington to keep one of the world's largest insurers afloat. The foundering giant is the federal government's own National Flood Insurance Program, which is $17.3 billion in debt to the U.S. Treasury. When the bills for Hurricanes Gustav, Hanna and Ike are added up, probably by year's end, the program will likely be in the red by more than $20 billion - with virtually no chance of paying it back.
NEWS
January 7, 2013 | Inquirer Staff Report
President Obama returned to Washington Sunday and signed the legislation authorizing $9.7 billion for flood insurance to aid victims of Hurricane Sandy. Congress passed the measure Friday while Obama was vacationing with his family in Hawaii. The $9.7 billion for flood insurance is only a piece of the $60 billion sought by states hit hard by the October storm. Northeastern lawmakers, still angry that the full package was sent back to the legislative starting line earlier last week, are anticipating a much tougher fight over the remaining funds.
NEWS
October 26, 2007 | By John Echeverria
The U.S. House of Representatives recently voted to extend the already insolvent National Flood Insurance Program - and expand the program to cover wind damage from hurricanes. The Senate may debate this measure soon. Pennsylvania and New Jersey residents should be outraged at this latest threat to pick the taxpayers' pocket. It's bad, unfair public policy. The federal government created the National Flood Insurance Program 40 years ago to fill a perceived gap in the private insurance market.
NEWS
August 5, 1998 | By Scott Fallon, INQUIRER TRENTON BUREAU
With New Jersey ranking among the top five states receiving federal flood-insurance payments, a national conservation group called yesterday for flood-prone communities to allow at-risk homes to be sold voluntarily to the government and then torn down. In a report compiling flood-insurance data from 1978 to 1995, the National Wildlife Federation targeted 31 New Jersey communities - including Atlantic City, North Wildwood and Ventnor - that have been repeatedly hit by flooding and could benefit from voluntary property buyouts.
NEWS
June 14, 2015 | By Ben Finley, Inquirer Staff Writer
Tiny Yardley Borough, perched along the Delaware River, has been one of the nation's most flood-prone communities - emblematic of the problems that have swamped the profoundly indebted National Flood Insurance Program. NFIP has paid out almost $25 million for flood losses since 1978 to property owners in the borough of just 2,400 people, most of that on structures that have flooded at least twice. After years of brutal losses, NFIP stands $23 billion in debt to the U.S. Treasury, and is looking to Yardley, and other floodplain towns across the country, to help it stay afloat.
NEWS
April 16, 2013 | By Geoff Mulvihill, Associated Press
This month, the federal government announced it would not give grants to repair homes badly damaged by Hurricane Sandy unless the owners agreed to ensure they complied with new advisory flood maps. In New Jersey, the policy will not change much because the state government already has said it would not approve rebuilding the most damaged homes unless they comply with the maps. Following is a look at what the flood maps mean to homeowners in coastal areas. Question. What are the maps?
NEWS
May 5, 1994 | By Claire Furia, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
Six months after suspending the borough's flood-insurance program for homeowners, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has reinstated the policy with one stipulation: The borough must undertake a costly project to rectify floodway problems on a property at Seventh Street and Keystone Avenue owned by asphalt contractor Peter Messina. The renewed insurance policy was to go into effect at midnight, FEMA officials said at a special Colwyn Borough Council meeting yesterday. FEMA representative David Thomas told the council that it had 30 days to submit a timetable for implementing a plan to correct the water flow at a stretch of Messina's property along Darby Creek from the Amtrak bridge almost to the Pine Street bridge.
NEWS
May 1, 1994 | By Anthony R. Wood, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
If life in the flood plain is a gamble, John Laber, for one, has decided to call nature's bluff. When he refinanced last year, Laber, who lives on Chestnut Street in Darby Borough next to Darby Creek, dropped his flood coverage. His reason is simple: "I couldn't afford the insurance. " Laber may be out on a limb over an often raging creek, but he is hardly there alone. In fact, among residents of flood-hazard areas, he has joined the overwhelming majority. Although in many cases it is a federal requirement, nationwide up to 85 percent of the homes and commercial buildings in flood zones are uninsured against flood losses, according to federal and private insurance experts.
NEWS
March 17, 2008 | By Anthony R. Wood INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The tiny Bucks County borough of Yardley has a handsome historic district, a picturesque canal path, and some of the most frequently flooded properties in the nation. Because of the Delaware River's chronic deluges, Yardley expects to receive $655,000 from a pilot grant program aimed at stemming federal flood claims in hard-hit towns. With its National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) swamped in $17.3 billion worth of red ink, the Federal Emergency Management Agency is making up to $160 million available to hundreds of communities across the country, including 172 in Pennsylvania and, so far, two in New Jersey.
NEWS
September 17, 2013 | By Ben Finley, Inquirer Staff Writer
  LOWER MAKEFIELD Ever since some faulty storm drains were repaired eight years ago, Lesia and Joe Pryor's Lower Makefield home has been flood-free, and the Pryors are confident their flooding issues have receded permanently. But they have just encountered another potentially costly flood-related problem: When they put up their house for sale, they will have to warn prospective buyers about a hefty flood-insurance bill. That could knock down the sale price. Under a new federal law the Pryors no longer will be able to pass along the federally subsidized flood-insurance rate that they have enjoyed for decades.
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NEWS
June 14, 2015 | By Ben Finley, Inquirer Staff Writer
Tiny Yardley Borough, perched along the Delaware River, has been one of the nation's most flood-prone communities - emblematic of the problems that have swamped the profoundly indebted National Flood Insurance Program. NFIP has paid out almost $25 million for flood losses since 1978 to property owners in the borough of just 2,400 people, most of that on structures that have flooded at least twice. After years of brutal losses, NFIP stands $23 billion in debt to the U.S. Treasury, and is looking to Yardley, and other floodplain towns across the country, to help it stay afloat.
BUSINESS
April 21, 2015 | By Joseph N. DiStefano, Inquirer Staff Writer
It's spring: Time to head to the Jersey Shore, smell the Atlantic, and daydream about buying a beach place. Albert Slap and Bob Hubbell, long-ago Penn grads, have started a service in Florida they hope buyers and lenders will consult before signing off on 30 years of payments in these times of rising waters. In some Shore neighborhoods, it could be a real estate buzz-killer. Slap, a onetime public-interest lawyer whose Sierra Club lawsuit curbed Philadelphia's sewage dumping way back in 1979, and Hubbell, past spokesman for the accounting firm KPMG, own Coastal Risk Consulting L.L.C.
NEWS
May 3, 2014 | By Chris Palmer, Inquirer Staff Writer
Tom Huganir removed the pontoon boat from his garage overnight Wednesday, worried that rising floodwaters would lift it into the ceiling. After dawn Thursday, Ed Rainsford kayaked to his home to find seven feet of the Schuylkill sloshing in his garage. And Thursday afternoon, with her home still surrounded by an impromptu moat, Lynn Watters hopped onto a homemade zip line and slid to her elevated porch. Such was life on West Indian Lane, a tiny street bordering the Schuylkill in West Norriton, Montgomery County - one of the most flood-prone communities in the region.
NEWS
October 30, 2013 | By Anthony R. Wood and Sandy Bauers, Inquirer Staff Writers
The historic cyclone that made landfall on this date last year was so powerful and devastating that it was designated a "superstorm," had its name retired, and entered the tropical storm hall of fame. But hurricane experts fear that something far worse than Sandy, blamed for $50 billion in damage, is brewing. In the next two decades, the nation could experience a $500 billion storm. The sea level is rising, and global warming might affect future storms. But even if the world's temperature stops rising before you finish this paragraph, hurricanes far more damaging than Sandy are all but a certainty, they say. Despite unprecedented forecasting, monitoring, and warning abilities, and a record period of hurricanes avoiding landfall, the disaster remains one of the nation's most robust growth industries, with almost unlimited potential.
NEWS
September 17, 2013 | By Ben Finley, Inquirer Staff Writer
  LOWER MAKEFIELD Ever since some faulty storm drains were repaired eight years ago, Lesia and Joe Pryor's Lower Makefield home has been flood-free, and the Pryors are confident their flooding issues have receded permanently. But they have just encountered another potentially costly flood-related problem: When they put up their house for sale, they will have to warn prospective buyers about a hefty flood-insurance bill. That could knock down the sale price. Under a new federal law the Pryors no longer will be able to pass along the federally subsidized flood-insurance rate that they have enjoyed for decades.
NEWS
June 9, 2013 | VOTERAMA IN CONGRESS
WASHINGTON - Here is how area members of Congress voted on major issues last week: House 2014 Homeland Security budget. Voting 245-182, the House on Thursday approved a $45 billion fiscal 2014 appropriations bill for the Department of Homeland Security and its 230,000 employees in seven agencies. The bill (HR 2217) increases spending for border protection, customs, and immigration enforcement while sharply cutting the Transportation Security Administration and Coast Guard budgets.
NEWS
April 16, 2013 | By Geoff Mulvihill, Associated Press
This month, the federal government announced it would not give grants to repair homes badly damaged by Hurricane Sandy unless the owners agreed to ensure they complied with new advisory flood maps. In New Jersey, the policy will not change much because the state government already has said it would not approve rebuilding the most damaged homes unless they comply with the maps. Following is a look at what the flood maps mean to homeowners in coastal areas. Question. What are the maps?
NEWS
April 3, 2013 | By Amy S. Rosenberg, Inquirer Staff Writer
Underwater doesn't even begin to get at the heart of Maurice Corkery's predicament. "This was my summer home," the Delaware County plant manager said of his little rancher on Third Street in Ocean City, N.J., flooded with its foundation cracked - totalled, really - by Sandy. "I was trying to think of a time line," he said. "It's been so long. I'm so screwed up. I haven't seen any money. Where is the money? All they do is talk about it. " His engineer has to talk to the insurance company engineer.
NEWS
January 21, 2013 | By James Osborne, Inquirer Staff Writer
At night, back in the apartment they have had to rent while they figure out what to do with their half-wrecked home in Manahawkin, Ed and Carol Krzanowski wonder whether this is the time to leave the Shore for good. The ranch house they moved into 35 years ago, where they had planned to spend the rest of their retirement, took in two feet of salt water from nearby Manahawkin Bay during Sandy. Like tens of thousands of homeowners up and down the Jersey Shore, the Krzanowskis are struggling to navigate a maze of insurance settlements, floodplain maps, and government disaster aid to figure out whether they can afford to rebuild.
NEWS
January 7, 2013 | Inquirer Staff Report
President Obama returned to Washington Sunday and signed the legislation authorizing $9.7 billion for flood insurance to aid victims of Hurricane Sandy. Congress passed the measure Friday while Obama was vacationing with his family in Hawaii. The $9.7 billion for flood insurance is only a piece of the $60 billion sought by states hit hard by the October storm. Northeastern lawmakers, still angry that the full package was sent back to the legislative starting line earlier last week, are anticipating a much tougher fight over the remaining funds.
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