Flood Programs

National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) &
the Community Rating System (CRS) 


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Community Rating System

Since 1968 the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has administered the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) which offers federally backed insurance money to communities that agree to adopt and enforce minimum standards for flood plain management to reduce future flood damage. In 1991, the NFIP implemented the Community Rating System (CRS) for encouraging and recognizing community flood plain management activities that "exceed" these minimum NFIP standards. Today more than 900 communities across the nation participate in CRS, including Palm Beach County and several of its municipalities. Plam Beach County joined the CRS in the Fall of 1991

As an incentive and reward for participation, the flood insurance rates of residents in CRS communities may be reduced by up to 45% to reflect the reduced flood risk resulting from activities that meet CRS's three goals: reducing flood losses, facilitating accurate insurance ratings, and promoting the awareness of flood insurance.

Communities can earn points in as many as 18 different creditable activity areas grouped into four areas of emphasis: promoting public awareness, reduction of flood damage, improved mapping and regulations; and enhanced flood preparedness. Based on the number of points earned, each CRS community is ranked in one of ten classes (with Class 1 requiring the most points). In turn, a community's class rating determines the amount of flood premium reduction its residents are eligible to receive. Communities are encouraged to improve their class ratings. Property owners residing within a Special Flood Hazard Area, an area subject to the one percent chance a year, may qualify for anywhere between 5% and 45% discount. Property owners outside the Special Flood Hazard Area qualify for a standard discount of 5%.

Does your Community Participate in CRS?

At this writing, 28 of the 38 municipalities and unincorporated Palm Beach County participate in the CRS. Two additional communities (Palm Beach Gardens and Wellington) have applied to join. The chart below lists participating communities, their current class rating, and the percentage NFIP premium discounts residents living in the Special Flood Hazard Area receive as of August 2009.

Participating CRS Communities
Community #Community NameCRS Class Rating% Premium Discount
120192Palm Beach County525%
120193City of Atlantis715%
000000City of Belle GladeNP0%
120195City of Boca Raton810%
120196City of Boynton Beach715%
000000Town of Briny BreezesNP0%
120198Town of Cloud Lake620%
125102City of Delray Beach810%
120200Town of Glen Ridge100%
000000City of GreenacresNP0%
125109Town of Gulf Stream100%
125111Town of HaverhillNP0%
120207Town of Highland Beach100%
120207Town of Hypoluxo810%
120208Town of Juno Beach525%
125119Town of Jupiter525%
120162Town of Jupiter Inlet Colony810%
120211Town of Lake Clarke Shores810%
120212Town of Lake Park810%
120213City of Lake Worth810%
120214City of Lantana95%
Loxahatchee Groves (Included in PB County)
120215Town of Manalapan810%
120216Town of Mangonia Park100%
120217Village of North Palm Beach715%
125134Town of Ocean Ridge715%
120219City of PahokeeNP0%
120220Town of Palm Beach715%
120221City of Palm Beach Gardens100%
125137Town of Palm Beach Shores810%
120223Village of Palm Springs810%
125142City of Riviera Beach95%
000000Village of Royal Palm BeachNP0%
000000City of South BayNP0%
120227Town of South Palm Beach95%
120228Village of Tequesta715%
125157Village of Wellington620%
120229City of West Palm Beach620%

*Based on the FEMA Florida Repetitive Loss List *NP Non-Participant in the CRS Program * UK Unknown

Flood Mitigation Assistance Program (FMA)

The Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) Program is a National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) initiative administered by the Florida Department of Community Affairs to help communities identify and implement measures to reduce or eliminate the long-term risk of flood damage to homes and other structures insurable under the National Flood Insurance Program.

Presently Palm Beach County offers the program on a limited basis to owners of "repetitive flood loss" properties based on the availability of Federal and State funds and the availability of local resources to administer the program. The program provides homeowners with reasonable, cost-effective hazard mitigation options and potential public and private financing alternatives.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency contributes up to 75% of eligible mitigation costs. The remaining 25% must come from non-federal sources. The homeowner must contribute at least 12.5%...

At, at the present time, Palm Beach County requires the homeowner to contribute the full non-federal share.

Examples of flood mitigation projects that might qualify for FMA funding assistance include:
  • Elevation of flood prone structures
  • Relocation of flood prone structures
  • Demolition (with or without rebuilding at higher elevation)
  • Acquisition
  • Various flood proofing measures.

If you have been notified that your property is on the NFIP repetitive flood loss list you may qualify for financial assistance under the FMA program. To find out if the program is being offered and whether you qualify, contact the Recovery & Mitigation Program Manager at the Division of Emergency Management 561-712-6400

Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS) 

The Local Mitigation Strategy (LMS) is a unified, coordinated effort among County and municipal governments to reduce the county's vulnerability to the impacts of identified natural and man-made hazards. Among its primary missions, the Strategy serves as a basis for comprehensive mitigation planning, project identification and prioritization, and provides assistance to project sponsors in securing and allocating available federal, state, local and other disaster mitigation assistance funds.

LMS projects cover a range of topics including major drainage improvement projects, hardening of public structures, Emergency Operation Center purchases, etc.

At any particular time, the LMS has 150 to 200 community mitigation projects on its Prioritized Project List. While some of these projects may eventually be self-funded by sponsoring communities, many will require outside financial assistance in order to be completed. By virtue of being on the LMS Prioritized Project List, each project potentially qualifies for funding assistance consideration though a variety of mitigation assistance programs. Projects typically involve a combination of outside and local funding in line with matching guidelines established by the assistance program.

The LMS closely adheres to guidelines and criteria provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Florida Department of Community Affairs.

A Steering Committee, made up of 15 representatives of county and municipal government, not-for-profit organizations and the private sector, serves as the policy body and advises and assists in the administration and oversight of LMS activities and initiatives. A Flood Mitigation Technical Advisory Committee, comprised of public and private sector engineers and other flood experts, is charged with assessing flood risks and developing strategies and projects to reduce future losses. The committee focuses on flood basins without regard to jurisdictional boundaries and involves community interests as project recommendations are developed.

A seven person Evaluation Panel comprised of combination of LMS Steering Committee members and community agency representatives is charged with reviewing and scoring projects as a basis for prioritization.

A Subcommittee of the LMS serves as the outreach, education and mutual assistance arm of the Community Rating System, focusing on flood awareness and education.

The Recovery & Mitigation section of Palm Beach County Division of Emergency Management provides administrative and technical support to the LMS and serves as the primary liaison with state and federal offices on LMS matters.

The LMS Steering Committee meets a minimum of two times a year (Spring & Fall) to adopt updated prioritized project lists, discuss relevant mitigation issues, and plan and evaluate community initiatives and strategies. These meetings are open to the public. Schedules, agendas and meeting summaries can be obtained by calling 561-712-6325.

For More Information

A detailed description of the Palm Beach County's LMS program and the current Prioritized Project List can be accessed at Palm Beach County Department of Public Safety.

LMS Steering Committee contact information can be obtained by calling 561-712-6400.