The House overwhelmingly passed legislation last night to undo flood insurance reform that Congress passed less than two years ago. When homeowners started calling lawmakers about sharp premium hikes, both chambers moved swiftly to ease the pain.
NPR's Ailsa Chang reports.
AILSA CHNAG, BYLINE: In 2012, Democrat Maxine Waters of California put her name on a bill that was meant to help the National Flood Insurance Program dig itself out of huge debt. Last night, she said she made a big mistake.
Environmental groups say politics, not safety, is priority in changes to levee board process.
A coalition of environmental groups is heading to Baton Rouge to fight legislation aimed at changing how levee board members are appointed. The changes would affect the levee board that is suing the oil industry to pay for repairing wetlands damaged over decades of oil production.
Mayors' meeting coincides with President Obama's initiative to help young men of color.
Representatives from more than two dozen U.S. cities are wrapping a conference in New Orleans this week aimed at reducing violence among young African American men and boys. It coincides with President Obama reaching out to foundations and businesses to help young men of color reach their full potential.
Friday is the deadline for pre-filing bills for the Louisiana legislative session that starts March 10. So far, the proposals include renewed attempts at state retirement reform, constitutional amendments to expand Medicaid, and the return of the electric chair.
Advocates of a south Louisiana flood control board's lawsuit against scores of oil and gas companies over erosion of coastal wetlands are making plans to fight legislation they say could undermine the suit.
Among other things, the bill filed for this year's legislative session would ensure Gov. Bobby Jindal's power to reject an independent committee's nominations for membership on the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East. Jindal opposes the lawsuit filed by the SLFPA-E last year.
Levees, like this one in New Orleans, must be certified by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers before appearing on federal flood maps. This change has resulted in higher flood insurance premiums in some areas.
Credit Mario Tama / Getty Images
Ward Aucoin is facing a sharp jump in his flood insurance premium, due to a 2012 law that may be revised. A crabber to make ends meet, Aucoin lives in Louisiana with his wife and two daughters, Taylor (far right) and Zoe.
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