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Flood insurance discounts retained for unincorporated Lee

By Staff | May 6, 2020

Lee County announced that flood insurance policy holders in unincorporated Lee County will continue to keep their 25 percent discount on standard federal flood insurance policies – a discount collectively valued at $14 million annually.

Every three years, the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) conducts a field visit to audit unincorporated Lee County’s ongoing floodplain management activities and flood-mapping records. Lee County received notification on April 20 that as a result of the audit, the county retained its Class 5 rating to earn the 25 percent discount in the NFIP’s Community Rating System.

The CRS program was implemented as a voluntary program for recognizing and encouraging community floodplain management activities exceeding the minimum NFIP standards. The CRS provides incentives in the form of premium discounts (in 5 percent increments) using a rating system from Class 10 (low) to Class 1 (high). Those activities include maintaining FEMA-established base flood elevations for new construction and providing community documentation, information and enforcement of FEMA’s Flood Insurance Rate Maps.

There are 65,809 NFIP policies in force in unincorporated Lee County. On most residential policies, the savings will range from $200 to $300 annually. Savings on commercial policies can range from $600 to $700 annually. Average annual savings is $72 for policies outside the FEMA-designated floodplain.

The full 25 percent discount is available for the next three years on standard-rated policies in the Special Flood Hazard Area, commonly called the FEMA floodplain. Standard Policies already receiving a reduced rate for property outside of the SFHA (in the X zone) benefit from an additional 10 percent CRS Discount. This discount is already reflected in current flood policy premiums.

“This savings is a tangible result of the flood mitigation and education activities that Lee County implements to protect lives and reduce property damage,” Lee County Board of County Commissioners Chairman Brian Hamman said. “We are pleased that the $14 million saved each year by residents and business owners stays here in Southwest Florida. Lee County continually works to retain this discount and pass along this savings to our residents.”

For more information, visit www.leegov.com/dcd/flood.