SmarterSafer Urges Congressional Leadership to Ensure Federal Agencies Implement Flood Protection Standards

May 17, 2015

The Honorable Paul Ryan
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Minority Leader
U.S. House of Representatives Washington, D.C. 20515

The Honorable Mitch McConnell
Majority Leader United State Senate
Washington, D.C., 20515

The Honorable Harry Reid
Minority Leader
United State Senate
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Speaker Ryan, Leader Pelosi, Leader McConnell, and Leader Reid:

SmarterSafer, a coalition of taxpayer advocates, insurance representatives, environmental groups, housing organizations and mitigation experts that advocates for environmentally-responsible, fiscally-sound approaches to natural catastrophe policy urges you to oppose efforts to block Federal agency implementation of Executive Order 13690 and the Federal Flood Risk Management Standard.

Flooding is the most common and costly natural disaster in the United States, damaging infrastructure, devastating lives, and disrupting the economy. Annual flood losses have increased from $5.6 billion per year in the 1990s to more than $10 billion in the 2000s. In addition, the intensity and frequency of flood-related natural disasters is increasing and with it, so are the costs to repair, rebuild, or replace our public infrastructure.

The Federal Flood Risk Management Standards seek to better protect people from harmful flooding; by establishing building standards that incorporate the best science on flooding, and requiring structures receiving federal funds to build at safe elevations, not only are people and property better protected, but federal investments are protected for the long-run. When federal funds are being used to build or rebuild structures or to subsidize structures, the government should ensure the taxpayer investments are being made in safe, resilient ways. Failure to fully implement the standard, either through Congressional interference or agency inaction, will leave us increasingly vulnerable to flooding, and will put taxpayer funds at risk.

In light of recent flooding events, we urge Congress to ensure that Federal agencies move forward with implementation of the executive order and the flood protection standard. We look forward to working with you on this important matter.


Environmental Organizations
American Rivers
Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES)
Defenders of Wildlife
Natural Resources Defense Council
National Wildlife Federation
Sierra Club

Consumer and Taxpayer Advocates
Coalition to Reduce Spending
R Street
National Taxpayers Union
Taxpayers for Common Sense
Taxpayers Protection Alliance
Insurer Interests
Allianz of America
Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers
Liberty Mutual Group
National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies
(NAMIC) National Flood Determination Association
Reinsurance Association of America

Mitigation Interests
Natural Hazard Mitigation Association
National Fire Protection Association

National Housing Conference
National Leased Housing Association

American Consumer Institute
Association of State Floodplain Managers
Center for Clean Air Policy
Friends of the Earth
Institute for Liberty
Property Casualty Insurers Association of America
Union of Concerned Scientists