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BY A SUN STAFF WRITER | June 22, 2004
WASHINGTON - The House of Representatives passed the Senate's version of a bill yesterday to reform the federal flood insurance program. The bill, which now goes to the president for his signature, includes several amendments written by Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes of Maryland that are designed to prevent a repeat of problems that have affected Tropical Storm Isabel victims. The reforms include increased education requirements for flood insurance agents and adjusters, and the creation of an appeals system for those dissatisfied with their settlements.
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BUSINESS
Eileen Ambrose | November 5, 2012
The Consumer Federation of America says yes. The nonprofit estimates Sandy will lead to 200,000 flood insurance claims, exhausting the National Flood Insurance Program. The CFA says Congress will have to swiftly authorize additional money to meet those claims. Makes you wonder if a polarized Congress will be able to pass such an authorization, or whether stalling will occur by politicians seeking to score some points.  But I digress.  Anyway, the CFA offers tips on how to get a fair claim payment on homeowner's insurance:  -     Report the claim as quickly as possible, because with insurance companies, it's first come, first served.
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NEWS
By JoAnna Daemmrich and JoAnna Daemmrich,SUN STAFF Sun staff writer Debbie M. Price contributed to this article | June 11, 1997
For residents of a flood-damaged East Baltimore neighborhood, an anxious wait continued yesterday as lawyers delayed deciding whether the city will pay for their losses.City Solicitor Otho M. Thompson put off discussions to determine whether the city is responsible for a May 10 pipe break that damaged dozens of row homes, including 15 that had to be demolished. Thompson said his office was sidetracked by the budget proposed Monday night by the City Council."We're looking at the causes, but at this point in time, my attention has been diverted to dealing with the budget," he said.
BUSINESS
By Eileen Ambrose, The Baltimore Sun | April 19, 2010
If you are in the market for flood insurance or might need a policy soon to qualify for a mortgage, don't wait to buy it. Unless Congress extends it, the National Flood Insurance Program will expire May 31 — the day before hurricane season starts. Existing policies would remain in effect, but consumers wouldn't be able to buy and renew policies or increase their coverage. The fate of the federal flood program has been tied to legislation that briefly extends unemployment and COBRA health benefits.
NEWS
October 22, 2007
Awell-intentioned federal program designed to provide flood insurance for properties the private market won't touch has morphed into a debt-ridden monster that encourages development in flood-prone areas and sticks taxpayers for the cost of repeatedly rebuilding the same homes. Now Congress, still more concerned about lower rates than lower risk, is moving to expand the program to add taxpayer-backed coverage for wind damage. Perhaps the only redeeming feature of a so-called reform measure approved by the House last month is a provision co-sponsored by Rep. Wayne T. Gilchrest, the Eastern Shore Republican, that would require the federal government to update its maps of flood-prone areas to take the effects of global warming into account.
NEWS
By Andrew A. Green and Andrew A. Green,SUN STAFF | June 5, 2004
The head of the federal flood insurance program has resigned weeks after promising an overhaul of his agency and agreeing to review the thousands of disputed claims from Tropical Storm Isabel, a spokeswoman for the Federal Emergency Management Agency said yesterday. The spokeswoman, Lea Anne McBride, declined to discuss the reasons that Anthony S. Lowe, director of the National Flood Insurance Program, gave for his departure Thursday. She said the claims review will continue and that Lowe's deputy, Trey Reid, will be acting director.
NEWS
December 30, 2009
I take severe umbrage at the sentence, "After Hurricane Katrina, we learned that the kind of chaos that ensues after a natural disaster in a Third World country can happen here" ("For many, a decade to forget," Dec. 27). This was NOT a natural disaster! Katrina wasn't the entity that put New Orleans in a toxic, fetid soup, left her citizens in calamitous conditions and caused damage in the billions of dollars. The storm passed by; New Orleans survived. High winds and much rain weren't catastrophic.
NEWS
By Andrew A. Green and Andrew A. Green,SUN STAFF | October 15, 2004
With some Tropical Storm Isabel victims receiving fresh denials of additional coverage under the federal flood insurance program, Maryland's U.S. senators sent a letter yesterday to Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge asking for him to revive a third-party review of unsettled claims. Sens. Paul S. Sarbanes and Barbara A. Mikulski sent another letter to U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft yesterday asking him to look into allegations by flood victims' advocate Steve Kanstoroom that "material misstatements of fact" by officials at the federal flood program and its subcontractors have cost policyholders thousands of dollars.
NEWS
November 9, 1993
Give us the strength as we face the paperwork, the phone calls and the inconveniences of starting over again.-- Prayer by Rev. Anne Broyles of the Malibu United Methodist Church.Residents of the Santa Monica Mountains area that was devastated by wildfires last week are already beginning to complain about the Federal Emergency Management Agency, but in fact all that paperwork is necessary. When the government starts giving people money or lending it to them at below-market rates, a lot of bureaucratic "i"s have to be dotted and "t"s crossed.
NEWS
By New York Times News Service | July 19, 1993
WASHINGTON -- As flood waters recede in the Middle West, thousands of people will be turning to the Federal Flood Insurance program for the money they need to repair or rebuild their damaged homes. But in a development long predicted by its critics, the program is out of money.The homeowners will get their benefits because the program can borrow up to $1 billion from the Treasury, and that should be more than enough to pay their claims. But questions about how -- or if -- the program should repay the loans are raising questions about whether it should exist at all.Backers of the insurance program say its building code requirements have encouraged people to build their houses high enough and strong enough to withstand flood damage, thereby greatly reducing the need for federal disaster assistance.
NEWS
December 30, 2009
I take severe umbrage at the sentence, "After Hurricane Katrina, we learned that the kind of chaos that ensues after a natural disaster in a Third World country can happen here" ("For many, a decade to forget," Dec. 27). This was NOT a natural disaster! Katrina wasn't the entity that put New Orleans in a toxic, fetid soup, left her citizens in calamitous conditions and caused damage in the billions of dollars. The storm passed by; New Orleans survived. High winds and much rain weren't catastrophic.
NEWS
October 22, 2007
Awell-intentioned federal program designed to provide flood insurance for properties the private market won't touch has morphed into a debt-ridden monster that encourages development in flood-prone areas and sticks taxpayers for the cost of repeatedly rebuilding the same homes. Now Congress, still more concerned about lower rates than lower risk, is moving to expand the program to add taxpayer-backed coverage for wind damage. Perhaps the only redeeming feature of a so-called reform measure approved by the House last month is a provision co-sponsored by Rep. Wayne T. Gilchrest, the Eastern Shore Republican, that would require the federal government to update its maps of flood-prone areas to take the effects of global warming into account.
NEWS
By Andrew A. Green and Andrew A. Green,SUN STAFF | October 15, 2004
With some Tropical Storm Isabel victims receiving fresh denials of additional coverage under the federal flood insurance program, Maryland's U.S. senators sent a letter yesterday to Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge asking for him to revive a third-party review of unsettled claims. Sens. Paul S. Sarbanes and Barbara A. Mikulski sent another letter to U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft yesterday asking him to look into allegations by flood victims' advocate Steve Kanstoroom that "material misstatements of fact" by officials at the federal flood program and its subcontractors have cost policyholders thousands of dollars.
NEWS
By Laura Barnhardt and Laura Barnhardt,SUN STAFF | September 14, 2004
With 65 Baltimore County families still living in trailers and others in rental properties because their homes were damaged by Tropical Storm Isabel last year, County Executive James T. Smith Jr. said yesterday that government should continue to help storm victims. "We can't tire just because it's been a year later," Smith said at a news conference, where he called for reforms to the National Flood Insurance Program and requested more financial assistance for storm victims. Smith said he was proud of his administration's response to the storm, including the emergency assistance to victims and help in cleaning up battered communities.
NEWS
By Andrew A. Green and Andrew A. Green,SUN STAFF | July 31, 2004
Advocates for Tropical Storm Isabel victims pressed a contractor for the federal flood insurance program yesterday to resolve potential conflicts of interest in a review of claims from the storm. Complaining of inconsistent settlement offers, advocates also questioned the training of flood insurance agents and adjusters in a meeting with Harvey Bernstein, vice president and deputy general counsel for Computer Sciences Corp., which handles many day-to-day operations of the National Flood Insurance Program.
NEWS
By Andrew A. Green and Andrew A. Green,SUN STAFF | July 15, 2004
Auditors from a federal inspector general's office have begun an investigation of the National Flood Insurance Program's handling of claims from Tropical Storm Isabel, according to flood victims and Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski's office. Two flood victims who have been leaders in the effort to secure increased settlements, Bernice Myer and Steve Kanstoroom, said they were interviewed this week by federal auditors. Mikulski spokeswoman Amy E. Hagovsky said yesterday that the auditors plan to complete their interviews by the end of the month, but she said she was not given other details of the investigation.
NEWS
By Andrew A. Green and Andrew A. Green,SUN STAFF | July 31, 2004
Advocates for Tropical Storm Isabel victims pressed a contractor for the federal flood insurance program yesterday to resolve potential conflicts of interest in a review of claims from the storm. Complaining of inconsistent settlement offers, advocates also questioned the training of flood insurance agents and adjusters in a meeting with Harvey Bernstein, vice president and deputy general counsel for Computer Sciences Corp., which handles many day-to-day operations of the National Flood Insurance Program.
NEWS
By Andrew A. Green and Andrew A. Green,SUN STAFF | July 15, 2004
Auditors from a federal inspector general's office have begun an investigation of the National Flood Insurance Program's handling of claims from Tropical Storm Isabel, according to flood victims and Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski's office. Two flood victims who have been leaders in the effort to secure increased settlements, Bernice Myer and Steve Kanstoroom, said they were interviewed this week by federal auditors. Mikulski spokeswoman Amy E. Hagovsky said yesterday that the auditors plan to complete their interviews by the end of the month, but she said she was not given other details of the investigation.
NEWS
BY A SUN STAFF WRITER | June 22, 2004
WASHINGTON - The House of Representatives passed the Senate's version of a bill yesterday to reform the federal flood insurance program. The bill, which now goes to the president for his signature, includes several amendments written by Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes of Maryland that are designed to prevent a repeat of problems that have affected Tropical Storm Isabel victims. The reforms include increased education requirements for flood insurance agents and adjusters, and the creation of an appeals system for those dissatisfied with their settlements.
NEWS
By Andrew A. Green and Andrew A. Green,SUN STAFF | June 5, 2004
The head of the federal flood insurance program has resigned weeks after promising an overhaul of his agency and agreeing to review the thousands of disputed claims from Tropical Storm Isabel, a spokeswoman for the Federal Emergency Management Agency said yesterday. The spokeswoman, Lea Anne McBride, declined to discuss the reasons that Anthony S. Lowe, director of the National Flood Insurance Program, gave for his departure Thursday. She said the claims review will continue and that Lowe's deputy, Trey Reid, will be acting director.
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