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Stop FEMA now

January 26, 2014

The passage and implementation of this act is one of the most outrageous and unfair acts that any government representatives have ever passed....

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(39)

802ParkAve1974everythingtonothingtoeverything

Jan-26-14 3:10 AM

I lost two ocean waterfront properties to flooding in the last 2 years Hurricane Irene in 2011, Then Sandy in 2012. Two different homes, the same total destruction.

Now, here's the interesting part: The maximum payout on any home, regardless of replacement cost and market value was $500,000!!! That sounds like a lot, but that would have bought you approximately $2,000,000 short of the replacement cost.

And that has had a profound negative effect on sale of shoreline properties everywhere.

In our case, we sold both cottages immediately and did fine money wise.

But as Linda says, it will help bring to it's knee an already broken Florida real estate market.

Remember Linda, FEMA has no money, FEMA has no pool of money to draw from. No CASH at all. Most of it was wiped out by Hurricane Katrina.

I still haven't gotten my money for louise coming up on two years.

Point being, the business decision was made to no longer under fund the flood prone area's.

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802ParkAve1974everythingtonothingtoeverything

Jan-26-14 3:45 AM

The percentage of people living in flood zones is tiny compared to the general population. And besides, highlanders should not have to pay insurance for something that can never happen to them.

So, while I'm so pleased to see you're still a great writer, I think your cause is lost.

To help ease on the premiums, I know of a real nice company that you or hubby could get nice a job at. Unfortunately, unless you know the owner, getting a job there is as likely as having over 40 years experience drawing human blood and collecting urine and stool samples.

But, hey, you never know.

I know a guy, and so do you, who could have his Cessna Citation pick you at Williamsport airport, fly you and hubby to Florida in 2.5 hours. Two commercial pilots.

He could take you to Florida for lunch and fly you back home for dinner. Or not. I'm serious.

My way of saying thanks. Thank you Linda, very much. I'm really happy.

Regards to Pat, to Joni, and bobbie-jo?.

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mikekerstetter

Jan-26-14 4:09 AM

'The Biggert-Waters Act will totally make all waterfront property virtually worthless.'

Not only waterfront, but those properties that are prone to repeated flooding. And why shouldn't it? Maybe property values for homes in those zones should reflect their real worth.

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Tgrammiex4

Jan-26-14 5:00 AM

mikekerstetter, do you think the local tax authority is going to be willing to de-value all these properties effected and cut thier taxes? Who will make up the difference, cause you know they won't cut thier budgets. This will, in some way, effect all property owners. Fema blew it on Katrina.Now they will make the whole country pay for it.

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mikekerstetter

Jan-26-14 5:33 AM

Granny, if people want to live on a river or a creek, I don't have a problem with it. If people want to buy houses in a known flood zone, go for it. But why are we artificially inflating the property value by hiding the real cost of insuring a home in those areas?

And what you are asking is this: Do I want to pay to subsidize these property's flood insurance or do I want to pay to subsidize their share of the tax burden? You'll have to pardon me if I don't like either choice.

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Tgrammiex4

Jan-26-14 6:35 AM

mikekerstetter- I understand your stance on this.It's not a good situation all the way around.Keep in mind though, many bought these properties years ago with no history of flooding and no anticipation of it ever happening.Not just here, all over the country.In the past 10-15 yrs. we have had record flooding all over. There have been alot of natural disasters besides flooding, fires, tornadoes etc.FEMA helps with all of these.They also help non-property owners.(renters)I don't know what theanswers are, i just don't think this bill is the right answer.There's gotta be a better way to do this.

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ToTEXASfromPA

Jan-26-14 7:10 AM

"There's gotta be a better way to do this." -Tgrammiex4

++

There is. Let the assessed value and the insurance on the property reflect the true risks. Get the federal government out of all of this; it should be an issue between a home owner and an insurance company in an open and competitive market.

***

Of course the politics of democrats vs a republican president and an incompetent New Orleans mayor and LA state governor that wouldn't evacuate people when the hurricane was bearing down and it could have been worse. Buses flooded in the parking lot that could have taken people.

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Tgrammiex4

Jan-26-14 7:19 AM

Of course the politics of democrats vs a republican president and an incompetent New Orleans mayor and LA state governor that wouldn't evacuate people when the hurricane was bearing down and it could have been worse. Buses flooded in the parking lot that could have taken people.- Texas

Couldn't agree more.All that waste of machinery and lives,unexcusable.

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mikekerstetter

Jan-26-14 7:21 AM

Grammie, I can understand the people who weren't in a 'high risk' area before and whose property has never flooded. My comments are directed towards those who knew they were in a flood zone. For instance, susquehannaretriever, who has written several LTE's and is quoted/pictured quite a bit in regard to the flood insurance. He said he's only had one claim in 20 years. While that may be true, I'm 95% certain that water at least surrounded his house at least twice in the last 12 years, based on flooding that a fire company social hall near him (which to the naked eye appears to be higher) has sustained. There are places that get flooded at least every other year. Those are the places that I am talking about.

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Capricorn1

Jan-26-14 7:22 AM

I think people need to do some research in regards to flood prone areas on the U.S. before making statements that everyone living in these areas should pay tens of thousands of dollars in premiums or move. According to the NOAA, the entire state of PA falls under the above average category for flood risk. FEMA maps have been proven to have many errors and in the state of FL alone, residents have paid in four times the amount in premiums then they have received back in claims in the last 35 years. Are you suggesting they vacate the entire state? FEMA has been totally mismanaged for decades and now they are attempting to recoup their waste and abuse of funds by driving people out of their homes. Has FEMA performed risk analysis on each individual property going by flooding and damage history? I think not. I live on a high risk property that has never been flooded and is located no where near a river or creek and my next door neighbor is low risk. You figure it out.

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mikekerstetter

Jan-26-14 7:40 AM

Cap-"According to the NOAA, the entire state of PA falls under the above average category for flood risk."

You are talking two different agencies and two different sets of criteria to determine risk.

Given PA's proximity to the ocean and past history, the state is at increased risk due to the fact that hurricanes, tropical storms and their remnants frequently hit our state and many times slow down or linger here. So anyone who lives near a stream/river or in areas of poor drainage or in some type of basin are at a higher risk of flooding. That just makes sense that we would be.

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MimLogue

Jan-26-14 8:11 AM

I am posting a video on u tube of a father in Muncy who bought a home 6 months ago watch it change your tune Mike Kerstetter,

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eriklatranyi

Jan-26-14 8:21 AM

Let's talk about property taxes...the "threat" if we do not subsidize those living in flood-prone areas.

So, a person loses their home because the cost of flood insurance is too high.

Does that person just cease to exist?

Doesn't that person go find a new place to live?

Will that new place not have property taxes levied upon it?

Yes, it might not be in the same local area, but if a particular community is depending on property tax revenue from a large number of flood-prone homes, then that community has been the beneficiary of our subsidizing those home values through flood insurance.

It is time we restore the market balance to this.

Mike is correct, get the gov't out of flood insurance and let the marketplace set the real rates based on real risk.

If you can't afford it, then you will have to move.

I know that will not be easy for many, but it is time we stop this ridiculous charade.

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Capricorn1

Jan-26-14 8:26 AM

You are talking two different agencies and two different sets of criteria to determine risk. -Mike

Mike, that was kinda my point. What criteria does FEMA use since they don't do risk analysis on each property? I bought a home in NC in the mid 80s that was literally 5 minutes from the ocean. I asked the lender about the need for flood insurance and was told I wasn't on a property that required it. I had to evacuate twice while I lived there because of hurricanes. luckily I just received wind damage which my homeowners covered. So exactly how do they determine risk? One property I own is considered low risk that should have been high risk and another property that is high risk with absolutely no justification.

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susquehannaretriever

Jan-26-14 9:32 AM

mike again shooting your mouth off before knowing facts. Water did NOT "sorround" my house.Please know what you are talking about before you spread lies.And if we are talking risk, we should look at claims paid out, hence my factual statement that I have had 1 claim in the past 25 years, 25 Mike, not 20 as you ignorantly quoted. So to all you people that are throwing your neighbors to the side, I sincerely hope that if this stands, and your taxes go thru the roof, hence making your homes unsustainable and you're not able to sell them, you do not whine; you asked for it. As far as blackmailing anyone, we are not in a position to blackmail anyone.We are telling it like it is.Have a nice day.....

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ToTEXASfromPA

Jan-26-14 9:39 AM

A water related question from a different angle since I am so far away......is the river frozen over yet? Is there lots of ice on it?

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eriklatranyi

Jan-26-14 9:50 AM

I have yet to see one homeowner affected by this propose anything other than continued support by taxpayers.

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susquehannaretriever

Jan-26-14 10:29 AM

Mike; I am susquehannaretriever's wife. I usually do not post but I want to make something VERY CLEAR to you and others who DO NOT UNDERSTAND what "Stop FEMA NOW" is trying to do. We want FAIR AND AFFORDABLE premiums for our properties that are NOT.....NOT severe repetitive loss properties. It is not the fact that we live in a flood zone! It is the fact that the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT is shooting these insurance premium from $1,000 to over $10,000 per year, payable in 1 month IN FULL or homeowners face FORECLOSURE! FEMA lied -- Congress did not do their due diligence, they DID NOT DO THEIR JOB! The point is - the new premiums were implemented WITHOUT the studies to back it up and without notice to homeowners. How does a home worth $80,000 end up with a YEARLY premium of $10,500 when there was only surface water in the basement?! One last point--I was told the subsidies (we were NOT told about) pd 2/3 of our annual premium--$756 (1/3) + $1512 (2/3) = $2268 annually -- NOT $10,

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mikekerstetter

Jan-26-14 10:45 AM

Jeff, tell me how Paul Gerringer hall had water inside in 2011 but your house a few hundred feet away (on a level street) wasn't surrounded by water. The hall is built up a few feet from street level. You may not have had water in your house, but you know as well as I do, you are at high risk for flooding. You've known it for 25 years, and still live there. I knew I was on the fringe of the 500 year flood plain and I moved. You can throw insults around all you want, but the fact is you chose to live there, you chose to continue to live there, and now you want us to feel bad for you because you made a bad choice and the Flood Insurance administrators are knocking on your door looking to charge what they probably should have been charging all along for the risk involved.

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mikekerstetter

Jan-26-14 10:50 AM

Mim, you're going to have to direct me to it. I searched youtube for mim logue and nothing comes up.

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mikekerstetter

Jan-26-14 10:54 AM

Jeff's Wife, if you believe you are not in a high risk area (I fully believe you are, but...) isn't there a process whereby you can ask for a risk assessment?

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ScottyDogg

Jan-26-14 11:08 AM

The sad thing is that those throwing stones at those who live where they do have no clue that some of those impacted where moved to the flood zone by updated FEMA mapping. Also, they simply do not realize that unless this issue gets addressed, it will have a big impact on those of us who do not live in such zones.

We will either pay more in overall insurance cost or even greater property taxes when that part of the tax base is assessed fairly or removed entirely.

Seeing some of the same people making their heartless comments here who make comments on other "political" type letters helps me understand why some of the liberal posters call those on the right heartless and uncaring.

I do not live anywhere near a flood zone and I understand that this is big government gone bad and those who oppose big government should be joining the chorus of "Stop FEMA Now" instead of making stupid comments like have been displayed here and on other letters on the subject.

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mikekerstetter

Jan-26-14 11:40 AM

ScottyDogg-"We will either pay more in overall insurance cost or even greater property taxes when that part of the tax base is assessed fairly or removed entirely."

As I said below, great choice, isn't it? Pay their insurance premiums or pay their share of taxes.

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eriklatranyi

Jan-26-14 12:53 PM

Remember, the Obama FEMA caused this, not the Biggert-Waters law.

FEMA is not doing what the law mandates.

Blame President Obama for continued lawlessness.

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Capricorn1

Jan-26-14 12:58 PM

I have yet to see one homeowner affected by this propose anything other than continued support by taxpayers. -Erik

Turn it back over to the private sector where they are in a better position to perform individual risk analysis. Technology has changed since this was handled by the private sector and they are much better equipped to evaluate each property fairly going by past flooding history and damage sustained. That way it will be fair for everyone. If you own a property that has had a history of flooding and a lot of damage, then of course you will pay more.

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