Representatives Carlos Curbelo and Seth Moulton yesterday introduced the bipartisan Flood Protection Act, legislation that would establish a cost-share program for infrastructure projects that divert, remove or store flood waters.
It would also authorize funding to assist communities with enhancement of natural barriers, modernization and maintenance of current infrastructure, such as levees, elevated roads and floodwalls to protect waterfront communities.
“According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, sea levels along South Florida are expected to rise about 15 inches above current levels by 2045. Just a one-foot increase in sea level is estimated to threaten up to $6.4 billion in taxable real estate in Miami-Dade County,” Curbelo said.
“Mitigation planning is the foundation for saving lives, protecting residential and commercial properties, keeping flood insurance rates manageable, and developing disaster resistant communities, and this bill would help these coastal communities to do just that.”
Moulton added that “this bill will help communities impacted by frequent and chronic coastal flooding like several in my district. Protecting critical infrastructure and the environment is essential to ensuring the economic growth of our coastal cities and towns, which provide vital and unique contributions to the modern economy.”
To aid states and local communities to pay for their share of costs, they will be allowed to apply jointly with neighboring communities and accept private contributions to help offset costs. The program would authorize $3 billion each year, for seven years and recipients would have to report on the progress of their projects annually.