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Congress takes step to delay flood insurance act

LAPLACE – On Thursday, local U.S. Congressmen successfully amended the Fiscal Year 2014 Homeland Security Appropriations bill to block implementation of section 207 in the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act.
The amendment will block flood insurance rate increases and give legistlators more time to modify the Biggert-Waters Act. It amendment passed with overwhelming bipartisan support. St. John the Baptist Parish President Natalie Robottom,  St. James Parish President Timmy Roussel and St. Charles Parish President V.J. St. Pierre were also instrumental in the amendment’s success. The parish leaders flew into Washington, D.C., with parish leaders from across Louisiana to emphasize the impact that Biggert-Waters would have among the people of the River Parishes.
“This is a win for south Louisiana and the nation. The reforms under the Biggert-Waters Act have created flood insurance rates which could destroy south Louisiana homes. They would also be devastating for coastal communities around the country,” said Congressman Bill Cassidy. “It is important to have a self-sustaining flood insurance program. However, it must account for the flood protections throughout south Louisiana that make massive flood insurance rates unnecessary. ”
“I am pleased to join my colleagues in supporting this amendment which further echoes the need to protect homeowners and prevent steep increases to flood insurance rates from burdening Louisiana residents,” Congressman Cedric Richmond said. “The passage of this bipartisan amendment is a win for Louisiana and reflects our commitment to long-term flood insurance changes. While I am a fierce advocate for environmental protections, I am extremely disappointed that the Natural Wildlife Federation has expressed opposition to this amendment. The fact that the Louisiana congressional delegation has united behind a single bill shows how important it is to protect our constituents from the risks associated with flood insurance affordability. A few weeks ago, I introduced the Flood Insurance Implementation Reform Act of 2013. Today, I am proud to stand in support of the families and communities relying on us to vote for policies that protect and preserve their way of life. ”
“St. Charles Parish is one of the areas most affected by Biggert-Waters, so I am glad to see that this amendment will give our coalition the time it needs to encourage a comprehensive solution for property owners in my parish and around the country who are
negatively affected by the proposed astronomical insurance rates. Now we must focus on the Senate passing a similar amendment to ensure this legislation becomes law. Ultimately, we must pass a permanent
fix to Biggert-Waters that will allow our residents to continue to live in their communities and hold onto their investments,” said St. Charles Parish President V.J. St. Pierre.