Ocean County Press Release

THE OCEAN COUNTY Board of Chosen Freeholders is praising a Senate decision to delay devastating flood insurance premium increases by another four years.

"This is good news to our residents and business owners who are still trying to recover from Superstorm Sandy," said Freeholder Director Joseph H. Vicari.

Vicari said many county residents continue to deal with serious financial problems as they try to replace homes and businesses lost and damaged by the storm.

"We have repeatedly stated that storm victims cannot afford these ridiculous rate increases on top of the cost of rebuilding," Vicari said. "I'm happy to say that the Senate heard us, and other shore communities, loud and clear."

The Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act now heads to the House for its approval.

"On behalf of all of the Sandy victims in Ocean County, I am calling on New Jersey's Congressional delegation and all of Congress to approve this measure and for President Obama to sign it immediately," Vicari said. "The President visited Ocean County personally, he knows the devastation caused by this storm."

The planned increase was even more outrageous considering the problems and delays many residents faced with receiving their flood insurance claims following the superstorm.

"This freeholder board heard complaints from residents six months after Sandy that they still hadn't received the insurance money they were entitled to," Vicari said.

The flood insurance program also came under fire when the Federal Emergency Management Agency released new maps following Sandy that dramatically increased the number and size of flood zones in Ocean County.

"There is no question the flood insurance program is in need of a serious overhaul, but to push this onto the backs of our suffering residents is clearly the wrong thing to do," Vicari said.

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