City can help reduce flood insurance costs costs

Most of the City built before 1960 in the downtown area is in the 100 year floodplain. Flood insurance is required for properties with mortgages, and insurance is recommended for the rest. Flood insurance is very expensive.

FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), which generates the 100 year flood maps, also administers the Community Rating System (CRS) program.  Participating in the CRS can lower insurance premiums for homeowners. The CRS has 10 steps that communities can take to increase their rating and lower the cost of flood insurance in that community. I’ve been told that the first steps (No. 10 and No. 9) are little more than filing paperwork.

Martinez does not now participate in the CRS and has no rating. Below is a web address that briefly explains CRS and lists the communities participating. You will note that Contra Costa County (un-incorporated areas) is currently rated at 6 and that Roseville is rated at 1. Why doesn’t our City participate?

– Doug Burgess

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