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Congress Passes Flood Insurance Legislation - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Congress Passes Flood Insurance Legislation

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – A bill passed in Congress Thursday should protect home- and business owners from rising flood insurance premiums.

Senator John Hoeven (R-North Dakota) says his chamber's legislation will "hold the line" on flood insurance premium costs for homeowners and businesses.

The Senate bill prevents the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) from steeply raising rates and keeps the cost of premiums affordable for homeowners and business. A House measure also requires FEMA to conduct an affordability study and report to Congress within 18 months.

The legislation now goes to the President's desk.

Key provisions include:

RESTORATION OF GRANDFATHERED RATES... ensuring that policyholders are not penalized who built to code and to standards of existing Flood Insurance Rate Maps.

REMOVAL OF RATE-INCREASE TRIGGERS... saving money on home sales and new policies for home- and business owners.

CAPPED FEDERAL PREMIUM INCREASES... at 18% annually, based on historical premium rates - rather than recent, increased rates.

AUTHORIZATION OF ANNUAL SURCHARGES... to help pay for the program: $25 for primary residences and $250 for second homes and businesses.

THE HOEVEN-HEITKAMP-CRAMER BASEMENT EXCEPTION... enabling homeowners to receive credit for flood-proofed basements when determining flood insurance rates.

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