With another deadline looming, the House passed S. 3814, a one-year extension of the beleaguered National Flood Insurance Program by a voice vote. The legislation will now be sent to the President for his signature.
The yearlong extension comes on the heels of multiple 3-month extensions and lapses of the program.
“The recent series of expirations and temporary extensions have been negatively impacting consumers and we expect that this one year extension will bring stability to the flood insurance marketplace.” Charles Symington Jr., SVP for government affairs for the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America, said in a statement.
A lasting funding solution to the program has foundered upon issues such as whether to include coverage for wind damage in the program and how to replenish the program’s coffers. A 2008 report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) concluded that the NFIP owes the U.S. Treasury $17 billion and is ill equipped to meet losses in the event of a future catastrophe.
"A one year extension gives Congress the time necessary to debate the more fundamental reforms the program needs,” said Blain Rethmeier, a spokesman for the American Insurance Association. “But, between now and then, homeowners living in flood-prone areas will have the stability, protection, and peace of mind to go on with their lives."
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