CRS

Community Rating System (CRS) 

 

What is CRS?

National Flood Insurance Program Community Rating System

The National Flood Insurance Program’s (NFIP) Community Rating System (CRS) is a voluntary incentive program that recognizes and encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum NFIP requirements.  As a result, flood insurance premium rates are discounted to reflect the reduced flood risk resulting from the community actions meeting the three goals of the CRS:

  1. Reduce flood damage to insurable property;
  2. Strengthen and support the insurance aspects of the NFIP, and
  3. Encourage a comprehensive approach to floodplain management.

The objective of the Community Rating System (CRS) is to recognize and reward communities that are doing more than meeting the minimum NFIP requirements to help their citizens prevent or reduce flood losses. The CRS also provides an incentive for communities to initiate new flood protection activities.

  

2017 Edition of CRS Coordinator’s Manual 

The CRS Coordinator’s Manual is the guidebook for the CRS and sets the criteria for CRS credit and classification. It explains how the program operates, what is credited, and how credits are calculated. Although it is primarily a reference for CRS activities and credits, it can also help guide communities that want to design or improve their floodplain management programs.

Download the 2017 Coordinator’s Manual

Remember . . .

Communities do not need to change their preparation for the next verification visit.  Just get ready as you always do.  A community’s coverage under the new edition will be phased in and the ISO/CRS Specialist will work with the community to spot any different documentation or other changes that will apply in the future.

Changes from previous editions will be marked with vertical bars in the margins of the pages of the 2017 Coordinator’s Manual.  This will help you spot places that you may want to review, to see if the change affects your community.

More about What’s New

  • The CRS has always credited mapping and regulations that account for future conditions and for sea level rise. The 2017 Coordinator’s Manual establishes a sea level rise standard for crediting communities that assess and manage the changes anticipated from changing sea levels.  The CRS has chosen to require, at a minimum, that communities use the “intermediate-high” projection for 2100, from the report Global Sea Level Rise Scenarios for the U.S. National Climate Assessment.  This report was published by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Program Office in collaboration with 10 federal and academic science institutions.
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ website offers a Sea-Level Change Curve Calculator that communities can use for purposes of CRS credit.  Website links and instructions for determining the sea level rise for a community will be available on www.CRSresources.org and on www.FEMA.gov.
  • The frequency of cycle visits for some communities will be changing, for the first time in the history of the CRS.  In 2010, as part of the implementation of the CRS Strategic Plan, the CRS Task Force began considering whether the total dollar discount provided to a CRS community should be a consideration in determining the frequency of CRS credit verification.  Subsequent research at East Carolina University that explored CRS verification methods recommended putting more verification emphasis on communities with larger dollar discounts. 
    • Beginning with the 2017 Coordinator’s Manual, those communities receiving the top 10% of premium discount dollars, along with the Class 1–4 communities, will be verified every 3 years.  All other communities will be verified every 5 years.  This change will be phased in over the next 5 years.  There will be no change to the timing of your next cycle visit.
  • Credit for channel debris removal (CDR) will no longer be a prerequisite for all other credit under Activity 540 (Drainage System Maintenance). This is part of a subtle re-alignment of credit under this activity, in response to the recognition that capital improvement programs for drainage (credited as CIP) and maintenance of problem sites (credited as PSM), for example, are important to all communities—regardless of whether their drainage system is “natural,” underground, engineered, or a combination—and thus should be eligible for CRS credit.

This will provide more flexibility to communities to address their drainage-related flood problems and still qualify for CRS credit.  Now, communities can receive credit for any combination of the elements of Drainage System Maintenance, without having credit for channel debris removal.  CDR credit will still be a prerequisite for stream dumping regulations (SDR) credit.

  • CRS Category C repetitive loss communities are being re-defined as those with 50 or more repetitive loss properties (compared to 10 or more such properties previously). Under the 2017 definition, there will be fewer Category C communities.  The 2017 Coordinator’s Manual clarifies that Category C communities must either prepare and adopt a Repetitive Loss Area Analysis (RLAA) for all repetitive loss areas, or prepare and adopt a floodplain management plan (FMP) that includes a problem assessment of all repetitive loss areas and a review of flood insurance claims.  You can find details about the FMP planning in Section 512.a of the 2017 Coordinator’s Manual, and about the RLAA in Section 512.c.

This is not a completely new idea, because Category C communities usually conduct these sorts of plans and assessments for their repetitive loss properties.  However, many floodplain management plans and/or disaster mitigation assistance plans currently do not meet the requirements of CRS Activity 510 Floodplain Management Planning Step 5(c).  Going forward, all Category C communities that do not produce a RLAA will have to earn full credit in Planning Step 5(c) for FMP.

Your ISO/CRS Specialist will work closely with your community to explain what is required in your particular situation.  The change will have a phase-in period of up to nine years, since the CRS verification cycle runs every 3 to 5 years, and FMP and disaster mitigation assistance plans require updates every 5 years.  If your community is a Category C community and has a CRS visit next year, for example, but your disaster mitigation assistance plan that receives CRS credit is not due for an update until the following year, then your plan will be verified under the previous Coordinator’s Manual.

 

CRS – Looking Back at 2016

What did the Community Rating System look like in 2016?  Here are some facts reflecting the program’s status.

  • 1,416 communities in the CRS.
  • 40 CRS Users Groups, in 27 states.
  • CRS communities in every state and in Puerto Rico; Florida has the most, with 230 communities.
  • On average, 53 new communities joined the CRS each year over the past five years.
  • 128 communities joining in the last two years.
  • Class 5 communities have grown by 31% in the past two years.

Flood Insurance in the CRS in 2016

  • Policyholders in CRS communities accounted for 70% of the NFIP policy base.
  • The CRS community policyholders received over $355 million in policy discounts due to actions to mitigate flood losses.
  • CRS communities are not just those with large policy bases. Communities with fewer than 100 policies made up 18% of CRS communities; 42% of CRS communities had 100–1,000 policies; and 40% of CRS communities had more than 1,000 policies.

CRS Credit for Flood Loss Mitigation

  • All CRS communities enforced some type of higher regulatory standard.
  • Freeboard standards ranging from one to three or more feet above base flood elevation were in place in 77 % of CRS communities.
  • Public outreach efforts to inform residents about flood hazards, flood protection, and flood insurance are in place in 90% of all CRS communities.
  • Open space and natural floodplain areas are protected and/or restored in 89% of CRS communities.
  • 94% of CRS communities implement programs for maintaining organized and accurate historic and current information related to flooding, including benchmarks, digital systems, flood maps, and supporting data.

Results of CRS-based Mitigation

Approximately 23,100 structures (20% of all the repetitive flood loss properties in CRS communities) have been mitigated. 

During the same period, in all non-CRS communities, 11,905 properties (or about 13%) were similarly mitigated.

Top CRS Performers

  • Class 1: Roseville, California
  • Class 2: Fort Collins, Colorado; Tulsa, Oklahoma; Thurston County, Washington; Pierce County, Washington; King County, Washington
  • Class 3:  Sacramento County, California; Ocala, Florida; Louisville-Jefferson County, Kentucky
  • Class 4:  Maricopa County, Arizona; Charleston County, South Carolina
  • Class 5:123 communities

 

Important Links for Additional CRS Information

 

New Communities click here to find the CRS application and Quick Check.

 

Kentucky’s CRS Program Manager 

If you would like to know more about the CRS, join the CRS or improve your existing CRS classification you should consider participating in the opportunities.  To learn how click here for the CRS Resources or contact Kentucky’s CRS Program Manager. Christina Groves, CFM, Christina.Groves@verisk.com, CRS Specialist, ISO Community Hazard Mitigation, ISO – Commercial Property, 270.754.3646.

 

What Kentucky Communities are in CRS?

The CRS is a voluntary program for NFIP-participating communities. For a full listing, click CRS Participating Communities – as of October 1 2015.  In Kentucky, 27 communities participate in the CRS program.  Congratulations to Louisville Metro who attained a Class 3 Rating.

    • Barren County – Class 9
    • Campbell County – Class 8
    • City of Berea – Class 8
    • City of Bowling Green – Class 7
    • City of Frankfort – Class 8
    • City of Grayson- Class 9
    • City of Henderson – Class 8
    • City of Melbourne – Class 8
    • City of Nicholasville- Class 8
    • City of Owensboro- Class 8
    • City of Paintsville- Class 9
    • City of Paris- Class 9
    • City of Pikeville- Class 9
    • City of Radcliff- Class 8
    • City of Richmond – Class 9
    • City of Silver Grove – Class 9
    • City of Southgate – Class 9
    • City of Woodlawn – Class 9
    • Daviess County – Class 8
    • Franklin County- Class 8
    • Henderson County – Class 8
    • Lexington-Fayette Urban County- Class 7
    • Louisville-Jefferson County Metro Government- Class 3
    • Madison County- Class 9
    • Pike County- Class 9
    • Rowan County- Class 9
    • Warren County- Class 8

 

CRS TRAINING

CRS 2017 Webinar Series

The CRS Webinar Series provides training opportunities to communities that are not yet participating in the Community Rating System (CRS) or local government staff that are new to the CRS, and to local government staff with experience in the CRS. The Series includes basic introductory sessions and more advanced topics, most averaging about an hour in length.

Registration:  Registration is free, but required, as space is limited. Some courses provide continuing education credits for Certified Floodplain Managers (CFMs).  Click here and type “CRS” in the search field to view webinars that are now open for registration.  If you have questions about or suggestions for the CRS Webinar Series, contact Becca.Croft@atkinsglobal.com.

 

Emergency Management Institute CRS Courses

New CRS coordinators are encouraged to attend the 4-day CRS class (E278).

CRS training opportunities are offered throughout the year at the FEMA’s Emergency Management Institute (EMI).  The course is free, and travel expenses are covered for those accepted to the EMI.

Click here for course information and schedules (download the schedule and search for E278).

 

NFIP/CRS Newsletters

The CRS Update Newsletter is a publication to provide local officials and others interested in the CRS with news they can use.  Follow the links.

 

 

 

 

 

KAMM mailing address: KAMM, PO Box 1016, Frankfort, KY 40602-1016.

Have questions, contact us at help@kymitigation.org.  Don’t forget to join the KAMM group on LinkedIn.