It’s time to revise Federal Flood Insurance program

October 24, 2017

While I absolutely agree and understand the need to help fellow Americans recently hit by environmental disasters that resulted in flooding, I would really like to encourage everyone to take your time and re-examine just what this program has resulted in.

The National Flood Insurance Program subsidizes beachfront home affordability.

My wife and I are living a pretty typical middle-class lifestyle. Where's my subsidy? Why are my tax dollars going to subsidize multi-million-dollar homes on the beach? Why am I watching social program budgets being slashed while there seems to be a bipartisan reaction to making sure these homeowners can continue to afford flood insurance for homes that should have never been built there in the first place?

It seems extremely unfair.

Secondly, the program continues to promote risky development in environmentally sensitive areas, including habitats for our coastal critters and natural buffers protecting us from the wrath of Mother Nature. The National Flood Insurance Program continuously chips away at the open space protecting us and enjoyed along our coasts by making it more "affordable" for developers to encroach into unstable areas.

The original intent of the program was to promote economic activity along coastal areas. Why? Because no one wanted to build or work there due to the uncertainty and severity of the weather patterns. It's time, especially given the increased severity of weather patterns, we reconsider that position.

I'd like to propose a slightly common-sense solution to the debt load of the program. North Carolina has enacted ordinances that if your home is claimed by the sea or flooding, you must rebuild your home "XXXX" number of feet farther back from the flood line where your original home was taken.

Let's mirror the same policy. If someone's home is claimed by a flood on a continuous basis, maybe twice within a 10-year period, then the Federal Flood Insurance program will buy the lot back and only issue money to the flood victim to build again outside of the flood plain. It might only be five miles back.

I think it's a compromise we can all agree is sensible.

I'm tired of my tax dollars subsidizing beachfront homes and then rebuilding them. There's got to be a better solution for the majority of us who have enough sense not to build on the water.

John Doerfler III


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