Flood Insurance: Gov. Scott's Letter to the New York Times

By: Gov. Rick Scott | Posted: March 4, 2014 10:30 AM
 Rick Scott

Gov. Rick Scott

Your editorial "Flooding Capitol Hill" (Feb. 26) addresses the important issue of flood insurance, the National Flood Insurance Program and the current reform legislation in Congress.

As someone who believes in accountability to taxpayers, I too, want a sound flood insurance program, but I also want a program that is fair to Florida families.

Florida homeowners have paid $16 billion, which is nearly four times what we have received in claim payments from the National Flood Insurance Program since 1978. We have paid in far more than our fair share, and it's simply unreasonable to ask Florida families to support the costs brought on by disasters in other states.

Pinellas County is ground zero in Florida as being the most affected by the rate hikes imposed by the Biggert-Waters Act of 2012. The median household income for Pinellas County is $46,051 (2012). That's below our nation's median household income of $53,046, and even below Florida's median household income. So those affected aren't all "beachside mansion owners." Furthermore, the maximum limit for a home covered by the NFIP is $350,000 ($250,000 for dwelling coverage -- $100,000 for contents coverage).

As a result of this flawed law, Floridians are facing steep increases in their flood-insurance premiums, like Rangel Dockery whose premium will skyrocket from $2,000 each year to $14,000 if there is no delay or change in the current law.

This week I asked the president to use his pen to immediately delay these hikes, and while the legislation currently in Congress isn't perfect, it's a good first step to a solution. The uncertainty that looms over Florida's homeowners and real-estate market has become an overwhelming burden that must be addressed.

Gov. Rick Scott

Comments (8)

Registered independent
11:59AM MAR 6TH 2014
I thought Scott was a small government kind of guy who thinks the free market will solve all the problems? What is he doing? I think the correct word is ...... Hipocracy?
2:11PM MAR 5TH 2014
Gee . . . . . Scott wants a federal government bailout for folks developing and living in high risk floodplains (and it's not like the NFIP program paying for this is $24 billion in debt, now is it) . . . . what ever happen to those shrill rightwing GOP adamant desires to only have market-based solutions and balancing the federal budget . . . . . guess that's why we have the word "HYPOCRITE" for the Florida GOP . . . . whenever we're talking about personal insurance, be it for flooding or guns in the home . . . . .

Pathetic . . . .
9:18AM MAR 5TH 2014
OOPS! I believe a very similar argument could have, should have, been made about Medicaid expansion and tax dollars. I guess the health and welfare of Floridians is not as important. Shame!
8:27AM MAR 5TH 2014
Mr. Scott lies when he claims believing in accountability to the taxpayers! He now takes up the issue of flood insurance, coincidentally, I'm sure, at the same time he's running for reelection! He could, and should have addressed this issue long before now, which demonstrates his overall lack of compassion for those "taxpayers" who have needed help years ago but leave it to Scott to play his political cards in an embarrassing attempt to gobble up voter support.
A comment below says she's disappointed with the President, yet it's clear she hasn't experienced relief from the current governor at all, but it's election time so he'll talk about it!
Scott is a fake and a flake. Self absorbed millionaire who cares only for himself, his wife's businesses (chuckle) and his millionaire buddies. He needs to go.
Erica Catton
6:45PM MAR 4TH 2014
My flood insurance went from $1000 to $8000 a year. I'm a single mother and could now face losing my home if something isn't done about these rates. It's very sad and disappointing that our President isn't doing anything about this.
9:24AM MAR 5TH 2014
I am going to guess you have not read the US Constitution or understood how it works. The US House and Senate pass the bills, the President only signs into law or vetos. The blame for the rise in insurance costs lie with the Senators and Congressman that wrote the bill, not Obama. Write them
C S.
12:40PM MAR 4TH 2014
I wonder why Florida, and in particular Pinellas Co. has been targeted to absorb most of the cost of the NFIP. If the rates go up this much, most of NE St Petersburg homeowners with a mortgage will be forced to abandon their homes, unable to pay these ridiculous rates. Is this some sort of a backdoor federal government confiscation of Pinellas county property that just may work? Again, why Pinellas County and not Miami-Dade County?
Bob H
1:01PM MAR 5TH 2014
Because Florida, especially south Florida, is the rainy season capital of the world. The Hurricanes don't help, either. Your a flat peninsula that's at best, 30 feet above sea level.

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