A number of U.S. senators and representatives have penned a joint letter to the Federal Emergency Management Agency expressing “significant concerns with the methodology” of its flood insurance rate maps for New Jersey, and urging FEMA to take immediate corrective measures to ensure they are scientifically accurate.
The letter was cosigned by Sens. Bob Menendez and Cory Booker (both D-N.J.) and U.S. Representatives Chris Smith (N.J.-4th), Frank Pallone (N.J.-6th), Rodney Frelinghuysen (N.J.-11th), Frank LoBiondo (N.J.-2nd) Bill Pascrell (N.J.-9th), Albio Sires (N.J.-8th), Leonard Lance (N.J.-7th), Donald Payne Jr. (N.J.-10th), Donald Norcross (N.J.-1st), Bonnie Watson Coleman (N.J.-12th) and Tom MacArthur (N.J.-3rd).
As Menendez’s office explains, flood insurance rate maps (FIRMs) are developed by FEMA to quantify flood risk around the country and are an important tool, not only to determine flood insurance premiums, but also to guide building codes and mitigation activities.