SEATTLE, Wash. -- Property owners in selected communities in Oregon, Idaho and Washington State are paying less for flood insurance, as of October 1, 2000. According to FEMA Acting Regional Director Tammy Doherty, that's thanks to special efforts by Northwest communities participating in FEMA's National Flood Insurance Program Community Rating System (CRS).
"The CRS rewards communities that voluntarily take steps to reduce the risk of flooding, and increase the effectiveness of flood protection, above and beyond those minimum actions required for participation in the National Flood Insurance Program," explains Doherty. "Such activities can fall under one or more of the following categories: Mapping and Regulations, Flood Damage Reduction, Flood Preparedness or Public Awareness."
Flood insurance premium reductions resulting from "above and beyond the minimum" initiatives run in five percent increments, from five percent to 45 percent. Class ratings range from Ten to One. The higher the flood protection activity, the lower the Class rating.
Seven Pacific Northwest CRS communities earned additional flood insurance premium reductions of five or ten percent for their residents:
- Kootenai County (from an eight to a six) in Idaho;
- Douglas County, and Talent (Class Eight) in Oregon; and
- Bellevue (six), Ephrata (eight), Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe (eight), and Thurston County (five) in Washington.
Nearly 4.2 million flood insurance policies are currently in force in more than 19,000 communities across America that participate in the NFIP. Nationally, over 900 communities now benefit from membership in the Community Rating System.