Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley and Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici will hold a joint town hall in Vernonia on Friday, April 3 at 2:00 PM at the Vernonia School Commons.
They will update constituents on their work in Washington, D.C. and answer questions and invite suggestions about how to tackle the challenges facing Oregon and America.
“There are huge issues facing Oregonians and the best way for me to effectively advocate for Oregon’s families and businesses is by getting out on the road and holding a town hall in every county, every year to hear directly from Oregonians,” said Merkley. “I invite all residents of Columbia County to come and discuss what we need to do to strengthen our state and nation.”
“Listening to constituents is an important part of my work,” Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici said. “Town hall meetings provide the opportunity for me to hear about the issues facing this diverse district and learn how I can help. Constituents always provide valuable feedback that informs the work I do when I’m back in Washington, D.C.”
Since joining the Senate in 2009, Merkley has held a town hall in each of Oregon’s 36 counties every year. The town hall in Vernonia will be his 224th town hall as a U.S. Senator.
Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act Comes on One Year Anniversary of Superstorm Sandy
On the one year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy, Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley and a bipartisan coalition of Senators introduced the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act which will protect thousands of Oregon homeowners from facing huge flood insurance premium rate hikes and require FEMA to complete an affordability study and propose real solutions to address affordability issues before any flood insurance premiums can be raised in the future.
“Something is very wrong when middle class families across Oregon and America are more worried about extreme spikes in flood insurance than about actual floods. This must be remedied,” said Merkley. “We can strengthen the long-term health of the program without pricing families out of their homes. I am pleased that last month’s hearing helped mobilize a bipartisan coalition committed to giving homeowners relief.”
Homeowners with mortgages living in flood zones are required to have flood insurance, which for about 20 percent of properties has traditionally been subsidized or grandfathered at a lower rate by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Before Superstorm Sandy struck, a federal flood insurance reform bill, the Biggert-Waters Act, was passed as part of a larger legislative package. The Biggert-Waters Act was aimed at reducing, or phasing out, the federal NFIP subsidy at up to 25 percent a year, which would dramatically increase premiums for homeowners and businesses. Read More