Starting Nov. 1st, flood insurance rates for residents in unincorporated Boulder County will go down. It seems counter-intuitive that after a large flood like the one we experienced in 2013, rates would actually be reduced, but Stacey Proctor, a program manager with Boulder County says the rate reduction is happening because of many actions taken in the county to reduce flood risk.
“It’s a program of the National Flood Insurance Program and what they do is that they recognize the work that communities do to have a comprehensive approach to reduce flood risk.” Every few years the CRS looks at what communities are doing to mitigate flood risk and then gives the community a rating based on that work. Proctor points to several areas that Boulder County has been working on “the work that our Office of Emergency Management has done to do flood warning and flood planning, land use policies and the extensive amounts of parks and open space properties we have – all of that helps reduce flood risk. That’s why we get lower rates.”
The new rates apply only to unincorporated Boulder County. Municipalities within Boulder County also participate in the Community Rating System program, but each community has its own rating.
The discount will apply for 5 years, assuming Boulder County does everything it needs to maintain its current rating. The rates however, may go up due to the based on the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012. Proctor says the County hopes that the rate reduction will make it feasible for more people to purchase flood insurance.