A short-term reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program through March 8 was included in the short-term continuing resolution passed by Congress last week.
Last week, Congress passed a short-term continuing resolution (CR) to fund federal government agencies. The resolution has been referred to as a “laddered" approach, a two-step continuing resolution (CR) that funds some federal agencies through March 1 and some through March 8.
A short-term reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) through March 8 was included in the CR, which makes this the third short-term reauthorization of the NFIP in the last four months. The NFIP was due to expire on Feb. 2.
Earlier today, the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs held a hearing entitled “Reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program: Local Perspectives on Challenges and Solutions".
The hearing examined the overall level and availability of flood insurance in the United States, as well as the steps that can be taken to encourage greater deployment of flood insurance coverage. Specifically, the hearing discussed NFIP's primary sources of funding; NFIP's purchase of reinsurance; Risk Rating 2.0; flood mitigation, mapping, and management.
The No. 1 priority of the Big “I" is to make sure the NFIP is reauthorized and does not lapse. Beyond that, the Big “I" supports policies to increase take-up rates, whether through the NFIP or the private market. In particular, the Big “I" urges Congress to consider modest policy changes that could help grow the private market and protect consumers, such as clarifying requirements related to continuous coverage and midterm cancellations.
The Big “I" continues to remind Congress that independent insurance agents and brokers play a critical role in the sale and delivery of flood insurance and must continue to do so for consumer participation to increase. Any kind of proposal that undercuts the valuable and trusted role that agents play in this process could have a negative impact on flood insurance participation rates.
As Congress continues to discuss reauthorization of, and potential reforms to the NFIP, the Big “I" will continue to advocate for independent insurance agents and provide updates through the News & Views e-newsletter.
Raaed Haddad is Big “I" director of federal government affairs.