WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Elaine Luria announced her support for the Flood Resiliency and Taxpayer Savings Act (H.R. 8462). This bipartisan bill will ensure that federal agencies invest in coastal resiliency measures when working in Hampton Roads and Coastal Virginia.
“By requiring federal agencies to plan for future flood risks, we can strengthen coastal resiliency and protect our community from recurrent flooding,” said Congresswoman Elaine Luria. “In Coastal Virginia, climate change is a problem we face every day that threatens our environment, infrastructure, and national security. This bill is an important step in the right direction for the federal government to take meaningful action to protect coastal communities.”
Specifically, the bill:
Directs federal agencies to consider and plan for future flood risk as they evaluate spending federal dollars, including the entire lifespan of a project.
Requires agency leaders, for projects that are currently or in the future will be in flood-prone areas, to use the best available data about current and future flood risk including FEMA maps, state and local data, hydrologic studies, and other information.
In the absence of concrete data, ensures agencies incorporate appropriate safeguards to shield communities (and federal investment) from future damage and loss—such as structure elevation, hardening, nature-based systems, or other mitigation strategies.
In Congress, Congresswoman Luria worked with colleagues from both parties to protect Coastal Virginian communities from rising sea levels and recurrent flooding. Last December, the Coastal and Great Lakes Communities Enhancement Act passed the House with Congresswoman Luria’s amendment to ensure that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) considers living shoreline projects that support resiliency at military installations. These projects restore and stabilize shorelines, including marshes, wetlands, and other parts of the shoreline ecosystem by using materials such as plants and oyster shells.