Portland Flood Insurance Discount Surfaces

October 1, 2001

Nearly 1,300 Portlanders who live in the flood plain will receive a 20 percent discount on their flood insurance premiums beginning in October, thanks to the city’s efforts to reduce the risk of flood damage.

According to a report in The Oregonian, Portland recently received a Class 6 rating from a national rating system. Only six of 928 rated communities in the country have a higher rating than Portland, while 26 other communities share the Class 6 designation.

The rating is based on a number of city initiatives, from its program to purchase flood-prone properties and switch them to open space, to improved storm-water management, higher regulatory standards and public outreach.

For example, since 1997, the city has taken on 125 flood-prone acres from willing sellers along Johnson Creek and converted the acreage to open space, according to Daniela Brod, Johnson Creek watershed manager.

Dean C. Marriott, director of the city Bureau of Environmental Services, which handles storm-water management, said his bureau has informed residents for years that there would be real benefits for their efforts, and this is a concrete example.

There are 1,297 flood-plain policyholders in Portland, most of them along Johnson Creek in Southeast Portland, according to the city. The average annual premium is $607, which translates into each policyholder saving about $120 a year, for a community-wide total of $79,000.

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