Mayor Michael Bloomberg has some suggestions on how to soften the blow for homeowners facing skyrocketing flood insurance premiums.
The mayor's office conducted a study with the RAND Corporation, which found that 35 percent of property owners in the floodplain who are required to carry flood insurance already do not have it.
Now that rates are increasing to match their risk, many more may struggle to cover the cost.
To help alleviate those concerns, the study proposes that the Federal Emergency Management Agency offer a non-mandatory insurance option, or at least a low-cost, high-deductible policy for lower-income homeowners.
The study also recommends a reduction of premiums for those who make their homes more flood-resilient.
"It's the old blood out of a stone problem," Bloomberg said. "Either FEMA's going to have to decide to let people take more risk, reduce the amount of insurance required, or have a federal program to pay for that insurance, or just to close a blind eye, which is what's been done."
Under new FEMA flood maps that will be adopted shortly, thousands of new properties will now be considered in the floodplain.
NY1 is told that lawmakers in Washington are working to make changes to the new policy to reduce the financial stress on storm-ravaged homeowners.