Susan Askew

Miami Beach Receives Upgraded Rating from FEMA:

Improved designation will mean savings on flood insurance premiums

Good new. Bad news. Miami Beach has improved one notch in the FEMA Community Rating System (CRS) to a Class 5 rating making the City one of only two in Miami-Dade County to achieve the score. CRS is a voluntary program through which communities can earn flood insurance discounts.

City Manager Jimmy Morales said in a news release, "Our hard work in continuing our commitment to reduce flood risk for residents and businesses did not go unnoticed. This notable achievement is a direct result of policy leadership and staff coordination and collaboration."

Beginning May 1, flood insurance premium savings will increase from 20 percent to 25 percent citywide. The new estimated savings are expected to increase from $6.6 million to $8.3 million annually, according to the release.

The savings will help offset any increasing federal rates, the City says, and, therein lies the rub. Last month, FEMA indicated it was moving to a new risk rating which, among other things, will provide customers "with more accurate rates based on their unique risk." The announcement has few details but you can read it here. New rates go into effect October 1, 2020.

Photo: City of Miami Beach