Pinellas to a create coalition to combat flood insurance hikes

Article Courtesy of The Tampa Bay Times

Published December 22, 2013


Pinellas County will create a coalition of area leaders to build consensus and fight changes made to the National Flood Insurance Program, said county commission Chairman Ken Welch. 

Welch said he hopes the coalition will bring a stronger voice to fight the issue on a national level.

"We've got to build a nucleus to make an impact," he said. 

The move is in reaction to the Biggert-Waters Act passed by Congress in 2012, which revamped the National Flood Insurance Program and caused premiums to skyrocket. The change is expected to have a greater impact on Pinellas than any other community in the nation. 

"This is not just a beach issue," Welch said.

Welch said insurance rate increases should be delayed until officials can perform a full assessment of how it will impact Pinellas County.

Wendy Nero, the county manager of intergovernmental relations, has been chosen to lead the group in coordination with Pinellas County Property Appraiser Pam Dubov. 

The coalition will start its work in January.