University of Wisconsin–Madison

Breaking the Cycle of "Flood-Rebuild-Repeat": Local and State Options to Improve Substantial Damage and Improvement Standards in the National Flood Insurance Program

Type Policy Brief or Report
Year 2019
Level Other Boards and Agencies
State(s) All States
Policy Areas Democracy & Governance, Environment & Natural Resources
Congress established the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) in 1968 to reduce flood damages nationwide and ease the Federal government’s financial burden for providing disaster recovery. However, a proportionally small number of properties insured through the program are repeatedly flooded, repaired, and rebuilt. These properties, known as “severe repetitive loss” properties, contribute disproportionally to the rising debts of the NFIP program. This paper analyzes the National Flood Insurance Program and its substantial damage/improvement standards, and ends with policy recommendations aimed at improving climate resilience within communities. (Republished with permission from NRDC)

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