Members of Congress would be well-advised to follow Sandra Bullock’s lead and consider the source – and source of funding – of opposition to Congressman Taylor’s HR 1264.Bullock, according to the story appearing in today’s Sun Herald, “wants her parts of a video promoting Gulf Coast restoration removed until she learns whether oil companies influenced it”:
[Bullock’s]…statement Thursday came after the website DeSmogBlog called the campaign an industry push to get support for drilling and taxpayer money to repair wetland damage caused by the BP oil spill. Women of the Storm, a New Orleans group that produced the video, lists America’s Wetland Foundation as a partner. The foundation lists BP and other oil companies as sponsors on its website.
After reading the article about Bullock’s stand, I found a related email message about Congressman Taylor’s latest “Dear Colleague” letter:
The lobbyists for a few environmental groups have contacted your offices in opposition to H.R. 1264 the Multiple Peril Insurance Act.
Their statements are not only misguided, they are offensive. It is offensive to suggest that no one living within 30 miles of a coastline should be able to buy reasonably-priced insurance that would pay claims promptly and fairly simply because there are some ecologically sensitive coastal areas that should not be developed.
My bill does not subsidize development for anyone, anywhere, not in sensitive areas or any areas. It would create an option for property owners who already are buying flood insurance to also buy wind insurance from NFIP, at risk-based, actuarially-sound premiums, so that they can know that they will be paid for any hurricane damage without having to live two or three years in a FEMA trailer on federal assistance while they sue the insurance companies that billed the entire hurricane loss to the flood policy and federal taxpayers.
The environmental lobbyists who have allied with the insurance and reinsurance industries to prevent coastal residents from having access to reasonably-priced hurricane insurance are making it difficult for military families, teachers, nurses, shipbuilders, and other middle-income households to buy homes. In many cases along the Mississippi Gulf Coast , the insurance premiums are as high as the mortgage payment. That is why the National Association of Home Builders, the National Association of Realtors, and the American Bankers Association all support H.R. 1264.
More than half of the population of the United States lives within 50 miles of a coastline. Coastal communities are the homes of our major ports and all the manufacturing and other industries that need to locate near ports and shipping lanes, oil and gas exploration and refineries, fisheries and the seafood industry, most Naval Stations and Marine Corps bases, and many Air Force bases that need to be near the open water for operational and training purposes. Coastal regions are vital to the national economy.
This bill has nothing to do with beach houses for millionaires. The insurance industry will write coverage for those properties and beachfront hotels and resort developments. It is the locally-owned small businesses, the retirees on a modest pension, and the working families who have been priced out of the market. This bill is for them.
Thank-you, Sandra Bullock and Congressman Taylor, for standing with the SLABBED!