New Jersey Governor Chris Christie slammed the National Flood Insurance program administered by FEMA for dragging it’s feet. He says it, “…has stunk,” because only 30% of homeowners’ flood insurance claims have been addressed. He is calling on FEMA to speed things up. His administration now plans to require insurance companies to respond to emergency requests within five business days and will allow only a one time five day extension for them to respond.
Christie says homeowners paid their insurance premiums on time and deserve to have their claims fulfilled. Without timely action by the flood insurance program he says homeowners can’t plan, and his administration can’t figure out who needs additional help.
FEMA didn’t respond directly to what Christie said, but a spokesman told ConsumerMojo.com in New Jersey it’s estimated based on the data received that, “There have been about 73,000 total claims and about 37,000 have been closed. In addition, he said, “Many more have received advance or partial payments. ”
In dealing with all of the Sandy issues he said, “FEMA’s top priority is to get resources to those in need as quickly as possible, while also meeting our requirements under the law. That’s why we’ve given our private sector partners additional flexibility to quickly pay advance and partial payments, and reduced paperwork requirements so the process can move as quickly as possible. Of the more than 140,000 (total) claims that have been filed, more than half have been closed and $3.7 billion has been paid out to survivors. We won’t be satisfied until policyholders have received payments for all covered losses.”