Flood insurance lowered in Ponca City
Ponca City Now - May 26, 2014 3:52 pm
The cost of flood insurance just got lower thanks to the efforts of the City of Ponca City Development Services Department. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has advanced Ponca City’s rating in the Community Rating System (CRS) from Class 6 to Class 5 which brings an extra 5% decrease in premiums of certain flood insurance policies for renewals and new policies effective May 1, 2014.
CRS communities are rated on a scale from 10 to 1 with 10 being the lowest. A rating of 10 has no discount but each rating increase brings an additional 5% discount on certain flood insurance premiums. At Class 5, Zone AE policies (for structures within the regulatory floodplain) now qualify for 25% lower premiums than the national standard. Since these policies were previously discounted 20% for the Class 6 rating, this latest rating increase will provide a 5% decrease in premiums.
Policies in Zone X areas (outside the regulatory floodplain) will not see a change because these properties already qualify for low premiums. Flood zones are determined by FEMA’s Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) which can be viewed at City Hall or online at www.msc.fema.gov.
Development Services Director and Floodplain Administrator, Chris Henderson, stated, “We are proud to have FEMA acknowledge our comprehensive floodplain management program. This highlights our commitment to reduce flood risks in Ponca City.”
The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was created by Congress in 1968 to provide a federal program for insuring property against flood losses. The program offered federally-backed flood insurance in local communities who agreed to regulate development in flood prone areas. Ponca City joined the NFIP in 1980.
The Community Rating System (CRS) was established in 1990 to encourage local communities to develop more stringent standards to further reduce flood losses beyond NFIP standards. CRS participation earns discounts on flood insurance premiums. Oklahoma currently has 398 communities participating in the NFIP. Of these, only 17 (4%) are also CRS communities. Of the 17 CRS communities, only four are rated at class 5 or better.
To find out more about flooding potential in your neighborhood, contact the Development Services Department by calling 580-767-0326 or stop by the first floor east wing of City Hall. City staff can provide free guidance information regarding floodplains, flood insurance and ways to reduce risks.