The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) will expire on May 31, 2019 unless Congress acts.
The history of NFIP extensions has been messy. The program was extended 17 times between 2008 and 2012, when the previous five-year reauthorization was signed into law. Currently, the NFIP is on its 10th short-term extension since late 2017. The NFIP lapsed briefly three times in 2018 alone; unfortunately, even short lapses can have a negative effect on consumers. While PIA National has been advocating for a long-term reauthorization with reforms to the program, Congress must first prioritize ensuring that the NFIP does not lapse. If Congress fails to act, the program will expire right at the beginning of the 2019 hurricane season, putting millions of policyholders at risk.
The U.S. House of Representatives has taken two actions to prevent a lapse. First, on May 10, 2019, the House passed a disaster relief bill (H.R. 2157) that also includes a 4-month extension of the NFIP to Sept. 30. However, the Senate majority does not support the disaster bill the House passed, for reasons that are unrelated to the NFIP, and the Senate is unlikely to pass the House version.
The second action occurred tonight when the House voted on a stand-alone bill, H.R. 2578, which would also extend the NFIP until Sept. 30. H.R. 2578 was introduced by Reps. Maxine Waters (chair of House Financial Services, D-CA) and Patrick McHenry (R-NC) and passed by voice vote. If the Senate remains unable to pass a disaster relief bill in the near term, the House-passed standalone NFIP extension may be the best option to prevent a lapse beginning on June 1.
PIA National supports any effort to prevent a lapse of the NFIP. At PIA National’s advocacy center, we have posted an action alert asking Congress to prevent a lapse of the program. PIA members are strongly encouraged to use the action alert to send a message to your House member and Senators asking them to support an extension of this program.
Congress needs to hear from you! Take action now by clicking here.