The Houston Chronicle investigation said Texas officials are struggling to enforce the part of a flood insurance program that aims to elevate or remove severely damaged properties from floodplains.
The Chronicle reports that the taxpayer-subsidized National Flood Insurance Program said officials should require home demolition or elevation if flood damage assessments are at least 50 percent of a home’s value.
The newspaper analyzed more than 36,000 claims of properties that are frequently flooded. The analysis found that about 16 percent of properties had evidence of being substantially damaged at least once before flooding again. The investigation found that officials often undervalue damage estimates.
The newspaper found that seven Houston properties have had more than 100 damage claims totaling $9 million. The combined value of the buildings is just $426,000.
Information from: Houston Chronicle, http://www.houstonchronicle.com