Flood Act repealed, but it’s not enough says Mussare
MUNCY – Members from the Muncy business community gathered at Hull’s Landing on Thursday, April 3 to hear guest speaker, Tony Mussare, county commissioner, speak on the update for commercial flood insurance, This was a strong topic as many of the businesses in the Muncy commercial district are affected by the Biggert Waters Flood Act of 2013.
New legislation repeals Section 205’s bought/sold provision which should help provide some relief from the “sticker shock” initially associated with the Act.
Mussare stated that he attended a FEMA conference. “We asked the questions, but they did not answer anything,” replied Commissioner Mussare. “They are starting to organize their policy House Bill 3370 which had some limitations. We still have an issue,” he added. “Rates are partly reduced, but over time will go up full term.” The bill was designed to delay certain provisions.
Because of this, Mussare also informed the group that property reassessments in the county are being delayed. “Lycoming County is very proactive with this issue and the cost of these regulations, but we are progressive to explore it,” he said. “We took the lead on the Biggert-Waters repeal.” Currently assessments work off old data and property sales.
Good news is coming for Muncy on the GIS flood mapping. From now on FEMA must notify consumers of their mapping process and justify the data being used. Mussare said, “We saw a glitch in the works. I think it will work and save us a ton of money.”
Elevations were also adjusted. Cindy Appleman, owner of REMAX Edge whose property was affected on Main Street, said this provision really helped her business. Her commercial insurance jumped from $1600 to $12,655. Paul and Sandy Putney said theirs jumped 75 percent.
“Don’t be silent,” urged Mussare who strongly recommended to contact local officials and government representatives. “It’s not just a federal issue. It is a state issue,” commented Vince Matteo, President of the Williamsport-Lycoming Chamber of Commerce who also came to the business meeting.
“The governor should have said something to us before this act was passed,” said Joann Pauling owner of Muncy Bake Shop who is very displeased with the entire process. “It could happen,” she said, “that everyone could be required to purchase disaster insurance. What would happen if the levee should break?”
“Not much help is out there for the commercial properties before the Congressional elections in November,” added Matteo.
Following the speakers MPBA president reminded members to participate in Muncy’s 4th Friday event to be held April 25 from 5 to 8 p.m. with live entertainment from Covert Action.
The next meeting is scheduled for May 1st at Orlando’s. Christina Rogers from Advocare in Muncy will be the guest speaker and the topic will be nutrition and health care.