The federal government is currently operating on a continuing resolution (CR) that expires at midnight on September 30. Unless Congress can pass another CR to fund the federal government beyond that date, the government will shut down.
Notably for PIA members, the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is also set to expire on September 30. If Congress doesn’t extend the program, it will lapse, in which case it would not have the authority to issue new policies or renew existing ones, among other limitations.
Historically, during lapses, the program has continued to adjust and pay claims arising out of flood losses incurred during lapses. This time, though, Risk Rating 2.0 (RR 2.0) could complicate matters; we don’t yet know what, if any, effect a lapse may have on its October 1 implementation date.
This week, the House released a CR that would fund the federal government for nine weeks, a period that would end on December 3, 2021. The House CR includes an extension of the NFIP until that same date.
However, even if the CR passes the House, its fate in the Senate is more uncertain. The CR also includes extends the federal debt limit until December 2022, a provision Senate Republicans have said they will not support. As a result, the NFIP’s fate remains uncertain, with only nine days until its authority expires.
The history of NFIP extensions has been notoriously messy. The program was extended 17 times between 2008 and 2012, when the previous five-year reauthorization was signed into law. That reauthorization ended on September 30, 2017, and the NFIP is now on its 16th short-term extension since late 2017. The NFIP briefly lapsed three times in 2018 alone; unfortunately, even short lapses can have a negative effect on consumers.
PIA has been encouraging congressional offices to extend the NFIP before it expires. PIA has also issued an action alert asking Congress to extend the NFIP before it expires at midnight on September 30. We encourage PIA members to make their voices heard by sending this urgent message to their federal representatives today.