The National Flood Insurance Program has not been updated since 1994. The House voted to revamp this vital program to continue protecting homes and businesses as it has for over 40 years. Part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), this vital program is struggling with debt due to recent losses.
Available to home and business owners in flood risk areas, the National Flood Insurance Program offers insurance to more than 5 million. This insurance is also available to over 20,000 communities that are involved in efforts to reduce flood damage.
Population growth in flood risk areas over the past 40 years has strained the flood program. Additionally, losses resulting from Hurricane Katrina have caused the program to fall deep into debt. Billions have been paid out in claims to area residents, many of whom lost everything from the flooding.
The bill is proposing several updates. One is to include allowances for premium and deductible increases. Such increases will allow for coverage increases as well. It also will allow for subsidy phase-out for homes in repeated flooding areas and vacation homes. Each provision in this bill is designed to provide more coverage to residents, as well as minimize the financial impact on them.
With changes vitally necessary for this program to continue, it has passed in the House, and is headed to a vote in the Senate. Well on its way to help protect homes and businesses, many hope that the Senate will feel the same.