This week during the National Flood Conference in Washington, D.C., multiple Big “I” members and staff spoke on topics including reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), the state of the private flood insurance market, combating flood-related E&O, communicating map changes and the role of the agent in the claims process, among other issues.
The conference comes at an opportune time as Congress continues to grapple with reauthorization of the NFIP. Without Congressional action, the program will expire on July 31. During the conference Big “I” members and staff also met with officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which oversees the NFIP, as well as congressional staff.
According to FEMA guidance, during a lapse in authority, new NFIP policies or requests to increase or add coverage cannot be initiated. In addition, renewal notices cannot be issued. A lapse could also slow down ongoing recovery efforts in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico and other areas hit by the devastating 2017 hurricane season.
The Big “I” and others are currently advocating for Congress to extend the NFIP before the program expires, and to support a long-term reauthorization of a modernized NFIP that would increase take up rates for flood insurance both in the NFIP and in the private market.
As the July 31 deadline nears, the Big “I” will continue to update members on congressional action related to flood insurance via News & Views.
Jennifer Webb is Big “I” federal government affairs counsel.