Members of Congress are making numerous attempts to delay, and effectively undo, the vital reforms to the National Flood Insurance Program passed overwhelming by Congress and signed into law last July by President Obama.
At least five legislative vehicles have been introduced, primarily with the goal of delaying the move toward risk-based pricing in the program and the phasing out of subsidies that understated the risk of flooding faced by homeowners. Perhaps not surprisingly, most of the proposals have been offered by lawmakers representing flood-prone areas where the move toward risk-based pricing has resulted in rate increases for flood coverage.
Sens. Mary Landrieu, D-La., David Vitter, R-La., Robert Menendez, D-N.J., and Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., unsuccessfully attempted to delay new risk-based premiums through amendments to the Water Development Act on the Senate floor in early May. In the House, at least three bills, H.R. 1485, H.R. 1267, and H.R. 219, have been introduced to change, freeze, or delay the process for moving to risk-based pricing for food coverage. Additionally, Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-La., has formed the Congressional Home Protection Caucus to press for changes to the NFIP reforms and has enlisted Vitter and several members of the House to join the group. In addition, Cassidy introduced an amendment barring the Federal Emergency Management Agency from using its budget to implement the reforms in appropriations legislation for the Department of Homeland Security that was passed by the House.
NAMIC continues to argue that efforts to delay or halt the reforms to the NFIP will not address the problems faced by homeowners and could have a negative impact on the program itself. The NFIP was forced to borrow billions from the Treasury because it was unable to charge adequate rates, and the effort being undertaken now would move the program back to that state. NAMIC will continue to strongly argue in favor of keeping the reforms on track.
Federal Affairs Director
Posted: Monday, June 10, 2013 12:30:28 PM. Modified: Monday, June 10, 2013 12:30:33 PM.
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