Federal flood insurance now available

Published 1:47 pm Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Town of Columbus has joined more than 20,500 communities nationwide that are allowed to purchase federally backed flood insurance.

This availability follows the community&squo;s adoption and enforcement of ordinances to reduce flood losses and acceptance by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

The Town of Columbus became a participant in the NFIP effective April 24, 2009. Residents of the town will be able to purchase flood insurance up to the limits under the Regular Phase of the program.

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A 30-day waiting period will be required before flood insurance coverage goes into effect.

Columbus Town Manager Tim Holloman said, &dquo;Adoption of this ordinance will allow residents to purchase flood insurance and more reasonable rates.

Participation in the NFIP allow&squo;s the Town to receive FEMA funding during emergencies.

For single-family dwellings, the building coverage limit is $250,000, and the contents coverage limit is $100,000. Renters can also protect their belongings by purchasing contents coverage. The limits for building and contents coverage for commercial properties are both $500,000.

Lenders must require borrowers whose properties are located in a designated flood hazard area to purchase flood insurance as a condition of receiving a federally-backed mortgage loan in accordance with the Federal Disaster Protection Act of 1973.

The NFIP is implemented through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). There are more than 5.5 million flood insurance policies in more than 20,500 participating communities nationwide.