St. Charles Parish Sues FEMA over Risk Rating 2.0

Published 2:15 pm Wednesday, April 26, 2023

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This afternoon, President Matthew Jewell, on behalf of St. Charles Parish, filed suit in federal court against the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) after being denied public record requests for information on Risk Rating 2.0. The Parish was forced to file suit after exhausting all available administrative remedies and seeks to require FEMA to comply with federal law.

“The residents of St. Charles Parish are seeing huge spikes in flood insurance rates, and we deserve to know why. We deserve transparency on the data being used to determine these astronomical rate increases,” said President Matthew Jewell.

In November 2022, St. Charles Parish made a Freedom of Information Act request to FEMA for information used in the model to determine rates affecting its residents. The Parish planned to use this information to assess its own risk and make any necessary improvements to its flood protection to ensure the lowest rate possible for its residents. To date, FEMA has failed to provide any data or documents it relied upon in formulating Risk Rating 2.0.

“Through millions of dollars of investment in the construction of new levees, pumps and storage area, St.Charles Parish is better protected than ever, yet residents are going to be priced out of living in the community they live and work in,” Jewell continued. “FEMA should be working with us to ensure the model accurately reflects our community’s real risk so that we can direct resources to mitigate, protect and achieve affordable flood insurance rates.”

Recently, FEMA released data showing that Louisiana will see a rate increase of 134%, with St. Charles Parish seeing an increase of 239% with some areas as high as 752%.

Risk Rating 2.0 was implemented administratively in October 2021.

For more information regarding St. Charles Parish, please visit our website at, Cox Channel 6, UVerse Channel 99, or follow us on Facebook (@stcharlesgov) and Instagram (@stcharlesgov).