No issue demonstrates the complex interrelation between the insurance industry and the government as vividly the National Flood Insurance Program.

Established by National Flood Insurance Act of 1968, the NFIP is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and currently covers some 5.6 million Americans. Over the past three years the program has struggled, lapsing three times and limping along with temporary extensions. With the one-year extension signed last year by President Obama set to expire at the end of September, lawmakers are once again struggling to craft a lasting fix to the cash-strapped program.

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