It may not be as compelling as Fire and Fury. But the Westport Progress Report on Floodplain Management could do something the Trumpland bestseller can’t: Save you 10% on your flood insurance.
According to Planning & Zoning director Mary Young, the annual report can lead to efforts by the town to secure that reduction for residents.
Flood insurance is offered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to communities that participate in the Community Rating System (CRS). Their classifications (ranked from 1 to 10) determine that amount of flood insurance rate reductions offered.
A ranking of 1 offers the highest reductions. Efforts thus far by the Planning & Zoning Commission have elevated Westport’s ranking from 10 to 8.
More efforts — including revised zoning regulations that might result in lowered premiums — are planned.
Westport residents are fortunate to live in a community that participates in the CRS program, thus enabling them to receive flood insurance from FEMA and reductions in their flood insurance rates. Many communities prone to flooding do not have the resources to participate in CRS.
Only 14 of the state’s 169 municipalities participate in CRS. Westport joined in 1995. Surrounding communities in Fairfield County that participate in CRS ranked near Westport. They range from 7 (Stamford) to 10 (Norwalk).
“Rigid requirements would need to be imposed to raise Westport’s ranking from 8 to 1,” Young says. “Such requirements may be perceived as overly restricting private property rights. Therefore, more modest steps to improve Westport’s ranking will be under discussion by the P&Z.”