Flooding costs from Hurricane Irene to be covered in part by taxpayer dollars

As Hurricane Irene bowled through the east coast, it left behind a path of destruction caused by its high winds and rains, with initial estimates for the damage ranging from $2 to $7 billion. That said, much of the bill for rebuilding will be covered by taxpayer dollars. The reason for this additional cost to taxpayers is that the majority of home and business owners in the Northeast don’t have coverage for flooding caused by hurricanes, and the federal insurance program is already facing a debt worth billions of dollars.…

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Irene Strengthens to Category 3 Hurricane as it Advances Into the Bahamas

BOSTON, Aug. 24, 2011 — As of the National Hurricane Center’s 8:00 am EDT advisory, Category 3 Hurricane Irene is battering the southern Bahamas with sustained winds of 115 mph. According to catastrophe modeling firm AIR Worldwide, Irene is currently 55 miles southeast of Acklins Island and 335 miles southeast of the capital Nassau. The storm is moving to the west-northwest at 9 mph. The center of the storm is headed directly for the Crooked and Acklins Islands, both sparsely populated (estimated population about 880 combined) and characterized by agriculture…

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National Flood Insurance Program on financial shaky ground

On Wednesday, a subcommittee of the House of Representatives approved amendments that could help revitalize the stagnant National Flood Insurance Program. The program is currently in a state of bankruptcy, having been unable to procure any additional funding from the government. It will continue to operate until September 30, when funding will run out completely. The legislation, which was passed by a voice vote, seeks to revamp the program to make it more financially sound and provide federal agencies such as FEMA more flexibility in their operations. “In the near…

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Damages from Sendai earthquake are far spread

Japan is in the midst of the most catastrophic disaster in recent history. On Friday, the nation suffered a magnitude 8.9 earthquake that was the most powerful geological event in the region in millennia. The quake triggered powerful tsunamis that invaded the shores of Japan and caused grievous damages to the Northern provinces. While the earthquake threatened to tear apart the nation’s foundations, the unrelenting tsunami washed away everything it its path. Insurance companies are struggling to fathom the cost of the disaster. Initial estimates claim that more than $35…

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