Most homeowners, who saw their bills quadruple this year, will save about $1,000 during each of the next two years.
Until this year, property owners within the Natomas floodplain were billed under â€œpreferred risk policies,â€ which are the least expensive policies available. Premiums run about $350 a year.
But this year, property owners were required to pay the â€œstandard rate.â€ For homeowners, many of whom were caught unaware, that meant premiums of about $1,300, depending on coverage. For owners of commercial properties, premiums soared by $2,000 or more.
After re-examining the burden on property owners and other factors, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has decided to allow a temporary, two-year return to the preferred rate, officials confirmed this week.
Without this change, property owners would have faced higher bills until repairs to the Natomas levees are complete and the basin is certified safe from a traumatic flood. The repairs to reach 200-year flood protection could take several more years.
_ doug reynolds