Rivaled only by the 1993 floods that left nearly 50 people dead and caused an estimated $20 billion in damages, this year's flooding will go down in history as some of the most devastating to ever hit the Midwest. Critics have pointed to the inadequacy of the levees lining the river-banks of the Mississippi and its tributaries throughout the Midwest. The overarching problem was that many of the levees were simply not built to withstand a flood of this magnitude. For infrastructure improvements, the US can look to other countries for innovative examples of flood prevention. One legislative reform effort is the Flood Insurance and Modernization Act. Sponsored by Senator Christopher Dodd, it passed the Senate in May and aims to enhance the financial strength of the NFIP with a $400 million earmark each year that will modernize floodplain maps and expand compulsory flood insurance purchasing requirements to include more at-risk residents.