As flood insurance rates rise, Scalise says he’s fighting for reforms


NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) – Along with property insurance premiums, rising flood insurance rates are increasing the financial pain for many Louisiana homeowners and Congressman Steve Scalise, who is GOP House Minority Whip , says he is still fighting to reform the National Flood Insurance Program amid resistance from some in the US Parliament.

Along with tens of thousands of policy cancellations, Louisianans face a perfect storm of rising insurance costs.

David Clements is co-owner of Clements Insurance Services in St. Bernard Parish.

“We have seen a substantial increase, in many cases up to 40%, 50%, 60%, even 70%. It’s really embarrassing for landlords, if you see your housing bill go up $300, $400 your mortgage, it’s very hard for a lot of people to keep up with,” Clements said of insurance rates. owners.

Clements said reinsurance is an important factor.

“Insurance companies buy insurance in global markets usually located in London or elsewhere in the world and the reinsurance market has really taken a hit over the last few years because of everything from the high number of hurricanes that hit the Gulf Coast, frosts in Texas, riots, fires,” Clements said.

Then there is flood insurance. FEMA’s new Risk Rating 2.0 pricing methodology is forcing many homeowners to pay more.

“If you had the policy before version 2.0 was implemented, you only see an increase of about 18% per year until you reach the mandatory premium levels, but anyone who builds a house, buy a house if they let their coverage expire, they bear the brunt of the full premium,” Clements said.

Scalise says higher flood insurance premiums are forcing people to drop their coverage.

“It makes flood insurance unaffordable, I mean we’ve seen thousands of people drop out of their policies, which is horrible, but it puts people at more risk, it puts the country at more risk,” he said. said Scalise.

FOX 8 asked Scalise what Congress is doing to address the flood insurance issue. He conceded there were “detractors” on both sides of the political aisle.

“Republican and Democrat and so any time you try to work on reform, it’s tough. I was able to help pass a bill a few years ago where we had a very broad coalition, Republicans and Democrats across the country, we passed a five-year program reform bill. flood insurance and it got nowhere in the Senate, so we at least have a roadmap to get that program back on track, we have to keep going because obviously we’re not there yet,” Scalise said.

FEMA says its pricing methodology that went into effect in October is designed to provide rates that are fairer, easier to understand, and better reflect an individual property’s flood risk, but some people aren’t. OK.

As for this hurricane season, it is hoped that storms will spare Louisiana this year and insurance rates may eventually come down.

“Hopefully we can get through the rest of this storm season unscathed and that may help turn things around, you know, if they don’t have to shell out billions and billions of dollars this year.”

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