The National Flood Insurance Program expired on Sunday after the Senate failed to pass the latest temporary extension to the cash-strapped program prior to the Easter recess.
Senators are expected to take action on H.R. 4851, the Continuing Extension Act, when they return on April 12th. For the past few years, the NFIP has survived on a series of temporary extensions as legislators have been unable to forge a consensus on the program. The primary point of contention is whether to include coverage for wind damage in the program.
“It’s unfortunate that the NFIP has fallen victim to the political process,” says Blain Rethmeier, spokesman for the American Insurance Association. “Ultimately the people who will suffer the most are property owners who need new coverage or who need to renew their flood insurance policies. One can only hope that Mother Nature is kind until April 12. Otherwise, there’s not much people can do.”
The bill also contains provisions to extend subsidies for those receiving health benefits under Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA). Without the extension, many unemployed receiving a 65% premium will see that coverage lapse starting March 30.
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