June 30--Members of Illinois' congressional delegation from both parties pulled together this week to make sure residents of the American Bottom would not face a mandate to buy flood insurance.
The proposal to mandate flood insurance for individuals in the Metro East and elsewhere who live in flood plains protected by levees, dams and other flood control structures originally was part of the National Flood Insurance Program reauthorization bill. Earlier this week, that bill was attached to a package of bills that included the federal transportation bill conference report and a bill to prevent student loan interest rates from increasing. The combined bills were given final approval Friday by Congress and sent to President Barack Obama for his signature.
U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and U.S. Rep. Jerry Costello, D-Belleville, are members of the House-Senate Transportation Bill Conference Committee and have been working for the last several years to make sure that residents whose homes are protected by the Wood River Levee and other levee systems in the Metro East would not be required to buy costly flood insurance.
It was the threat of such a mandate, which stemmed from Federal Emergency Management Agency concerns about the protection level provided by the Metro East's Mississippi River levees and their integrity, that prompted the ongoing effort to upgrade the Wood River Levee and the area's other levee systems.
Durbin and Costello were joined Friday by U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., and U.S. Rep. John Shimkus, R-Collinsville, in announcing they had succeeded in defeating a proposal that would have mandated such flood insurance for American Bottom residents.
Read the full story on Saturday in The Telegraph or online at www.thetelegraph.com
(c)2012 The Telegraph (Alton, Ill.)
Visit The Telegraph (Alton, Ill.) at www.thetelegraph.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services