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Berkeley Homeowners Get A Break From FEMA With Better Flood Insurance Rating

Residents will now receive a 20 percent discount instead of 15 percent for flood insurance premiums

by Patricia A. Miller

Berkeley Township residents who have flood insurance will soon see a bigger discount on their premiums, Mayor Carmen F. Amato Jr. said.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency notified township officials that Berkeley residents will get a 20 percent discount rather than the 15 percent discount they had been paying, Amato said at the Jan. 14 Township Council meeting.

Berkeley is a participating municipality in the National Flood Insurance Program's Community Rating System (CRS).

The CRS is a voluntary incentive program that recognizes and encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum NFIP requirements, according to FEMA's website.

When a municipality reduces flood risk by meeting the three goals of the CRS, flood insurance premium rates are discounted. 

The goals include:

  1. Reduce flood damage to insurable property;
  2. Strengthen and support the insurance aspects of the NFIP
  3. Encourage a comprehensive approach to floodplain management.
Berkeley has moved up to the sixth class CRS designation. Previously the township was rated seventh class, the mayor said.

"That's an added five percent for our homeowners," Amato said. "Even though we haven't always agree with FEMA, we do agree with this."

Both Amato and Township Administrator Christopher Reid credited township Flood Mitigation Officer Rejean LaLiberte with helping to achieve the new rating.

"He puts in countless hours," Reid said. "He works overtime, doesn't ask for any raises. I personally want to thank Ray. I think he did a fantastic job."


Chief Wahoo January 14, 2014 at 08:11 AM
hey Amato, how are those 2014 property taxes looking ???
ray January 14, 2014 at 09:44 AM
Hey, guys, somebody's got to pay for the insurance. If the rates are too high, that means you can't afford to live on the water, so move in land. If you force the insurance companies to lower their rates, that means they have to raise their rates for people who DON'T live on the water, and that means you and me. It's either that, or they go bankrupt. I don't know about you, but I'm not in to subsidizing somebody's summer home or boat slip.

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